Since La Paz is such a large city, there were a number of different hotels to choose from. I went on TripAdvisor to see what places had good ratings. It didn’t take me long to decide on Rendezvous Hotel– it was the #1 rated B&B in La Paz and it was within our budget.
All of the negative reviews that I saw were related to the house rules. Since the hotel is a small, family run business, there are many rules which allow the owners to be able to have a life and still run a successful business. Everything is laid out very clearly in an email that is sent before you arrive. Since our bus was going to arrive after 5pm, we just needed to let the hotel know that we would be late, something that I believe is a reasonable rule.
Rendezvous Hotel – Room #3
I had booked a budget double which is an interior room with only glass blocks for light. I figured that our budget was more important to us than a window. Once we arrived, we were taken up to room #3. I was very surprised and happy when I saw that our room had been upgraded. We were not in an interior room and the room we were given was awesome.
We had a queen size bed, armoire, desk, arm chair and couch as well as a gas heater. The bed was very comfortable and after spending so much time sleeping on full size beds, it was an amazing treat to have a queen bed to spread out on. The bed had a quilt and a comforter but we only needed the quilt since the room itself stayed quite warm, another rarity in South America.
Every day that we stayed our room was serviced and we were given fresh towels. It was nice to have that level of service, something that isn’t common in our budget travels.
The most exciting thing about the bathroom at the Rendezvous Hotel for me is that I could flush my toilet paper. I haven’t been able to do this since I left the US 2.5 months ago and it made me feel like I was back at home.
Our shower consistently had hot water, good water pressure and a vent fan, a combination that is nearly impossible to find in South America. The bathroom itself was quite large and decorated very well with quality materials.
Rendezvous Hotel – Amenities
Once we saw all of the amenities of the hotel, we understood why the reviews were so favorable.
The breakfast at Rendezvous Hotel was the best that we have had on our trip to date. There was everything that we could have wanted – fresh fruit, cereal, omelettes, pastries, rolls and more. All of the fruit was the perfect ripeness and the breakfast variety was great, not getting bored with it during the 3 days that we stayed there.
There are 4 different networks at the hotel which covered 11 rooms. This was amazing because it increased the network speed since everyone wasn’t on the same network. You could tell by the speed that the hotel chose the best internet provider available.
Overnight when everyone was sleeping, we set our computers to load pictures to our Google drive. Since nobody was online at that time, we were able to load the bulk of our Machu Picchu pictures which made us both happy.
In the communal living room, there was a large collection of DVDs available. Many of them were in Spanish, but there were still quite a few in English. Each room was equipped with a DVD player where you could watch movies.
We had planned to have a movie night when we were in La Paz, but were busy catching up with our blogs since we finally had reliable, fast internet.
Many communal kitchens are somewhat gross as the backpacker community isn’t always good at cleaning up after themselves. This is the exact opposite of Rendezvous Hotel where the kitchen was not only clean but had high quality items to use.
We decided that we would cook in one night to not only save money, but also get a break from dining out. After going back and forth at the grocery store with what to have, we decided on French Toast. It may seem like an odd selection but it’s hard to find American breakfast foods and traditional meals require many ingredients which can add up quickly. While our French Toast wasn’t as good as when we make it at home, we did alright and had a good time cooking it up.
In the afternoon and evening, the breakfast dining room is converted to a restaurant. We ate there our first night as it had gotten late and we didn’t feel like exploring the neighborhood for somewhere to eat.
While the prices were higher than we usually spend on dinner, the food was very good and the service was great.
There are 2 outdoor patios at the hotel – one on the 2nd floor, right next to the communal kitchen and the second on the rooftop. Both of the balconies have great views of the city and were the perfect place to relax even though it was a little bit cool outside. The best view was from the rooftop which also had a view of the surrounding snow-capped mountains.
Free Drinking Water
La Paz has an altitude of 13,313 feet, which is extremely high for most people. The best way to combat altitude sickness, besides medication, is to drink a lot of water.
The hotel was great as they had large 5 gallon size jugs of water in the kitchen for everyone to drink. We were able to refill our water bottles before we went out, free of charge.
The owner of the hotel is Zach, a guy about our age who is originally from Boston. It was great to not have any of our conversation lost in translation.
We got great directions to get around, including how to take public transit, something many hotels don’t let you know, just telling you to take taxis everywhere. In addition to the directions, we got lots of information about what we should see and do during our time in La Paz.
After we got all of our information about La Paz, we were happy to be able to have a conversation in English, talking as fast as we wanted. It is crazy how much you miss being able to freely talk English when you’re traveling to countries where English is not the primary language.
Rendezvous Hotel – Location
Most of the hotels that tourists stay at are in the historic city center. Rendezvous Hotel was different since it is located within Sopocachi, a high end, expat friendly area. While it made getting to the tourist area a little more challenging because we had to take a collectivo, taxi or walk, it was nice to experience a true La Paz neighborhood.
We liked our time at the Rendezvous Hotel so much that we extended our stay an extra day before we left for our tour of Sajama National Park and the salt flats. I wish that I had planned out the timing differently though as Zach was going to prepare a Thanksgiving dinner for guests that were staying at the hotel on Thanksgiving. It would have been amazing to have a taste of home so far away.
I would highly recommend anyone visiting La Paz to stay at the Rendezvous Hotel. The rooms are very nice, reasonably priced and the amenities are top notch. Even though it’s not near all the tourist attractions, it gives you the chance to see the real La Paz, not the tourist version.