Casa Gangotena exudes elegance. The building, a former mansion, is exquisite.
Built in 1880 and serving as home to several Republican-era presidents, it suffered from a major fire in 1914. The mansion was rebuilt by the Gangotena family in 1926, and was occupied by them until 2001. In late 2006 extensive restorations to turn the mansion into a hotel were begun. Walking through the grand staircase and hallways today, you can find original tin ceilings, mirrors, murals and friezes, as well as impeccable design and the best of furnishings.
The location is ideal. Casa Gangotena is in the centre of historic Quito, facing Plaza San Francisco with beautiful views of the imposing church and monastery of St Francis. From the hotel’s rooftop terrace, you can see in every direction including toward El Panecillo hill and the 45 meter statue of a winged Virgin Mary, made out of 7000 pieces of aluminium.
Casa Gangotena is a hotel both luxury and boutique. It has 31 rooms, all different, eight of which face on to Plaza San Francisco. Rooms are outfitted with every comfort you could possibly imagine. I especially loved the basket of local Ecuadorian fruits, and the brochure explaining what they were and the best way to eat them.
Dining at Casa Gangotena is not to be missed. Executive Chef Andrés Dávila uses local ingredients and both traditional and fusion recipes. The buffet breakfast (with eggs to order) is stunning. Afternoon tea features a local coffee blend and five tea varieties, plus sweet and savoury treats from the pastry chef. And dinner … let’s just say I ate far too much, yet still wanted a second serving of the llama springrolls!
Opened only in October 2011, Casa Gangotena has already won several Trip Advisor Travelers Choice awards, including for Best Hotel in South America (2014) and placed sixth for Best Hotel in the World (2014).