You can choose to stay at one of the many accommodations at the foot of Machu Picchu (around Machu Picchu station) or head to Belmond Sanctuary Lodge which sits at the entrance of the Machu Picchu Citadel.
We booked El Albergue Ollantaytambo which was our lodging after the Machu Picchu leg, where we left most luggage at due to the cabin luggage restrictions on Vistadome.
Arriving in Machu Picchu, we went for the luxurious Belmond Sanctuary Lodge (625 USD+ prpn) with a half board package (with breakfast, and a choice of lunch or dinner) and these are the 8 great reasons that blew us away:
Everything after you alight from Vistadome, will be arranged for you. A representative will explain to how to get to the bus stop and assist you with your luggage. When we arrive at the hotel, the reception consulted us on our meal timings, showed us the compound. I booked our outbound train tickets on the wrong date and they fixed in for us with a small change fee. We were so relieved.
2. Guaranteed two visits to the Machu Picchu
We could enjoy high tea before hopping over to the Citadel from 330pm to 5pm before it closed for the day. This afternoon visit was absolutely peaceful because most of the tourists have already exited for the day. The next day, we woke up early for our second visit and the morning climb.
3. Great rest
(pictures from Belmond Sanctuary Lodge website)
I loved the cosy room and had a great nap after we explored the ruins in the afternoon, and woke up fresh for dinner. Plus, a great night’s rest before the early morning Machu Picchu climb the next day. You could also go chill out in the jacuzzi pools in the early evening and enjoy the views.
4. Bubbly & sweet
Champagne and chocolates for us on honeymoon 🙂
5. Room with a view 😀
We had a room looking out to the entrance to the ruins so we knew exactly how many visitors were queuing up the next morning.
6. Breakfast before hiking
While having breakfast the next day, we could see tourists arriving in the early morning buses to start their Machu Picchu Citadel tour or mountain trails. We were lucky to be well-rested, had sufficient time to eat before we did our climb. It was a blessing to not have to rush.
7. Use of the day room
Post check-out, guests could use the dedicated day room with shower facilities to wash up, chill out, before heading down to the town at the foot of Machu Picchu to grab a bite and catch the train out.
8. VIP lounge for Belmond guests at the Machu Picchu station
After exploring the Aguas Calientes town to get our lunch and postcards, we headed back to the VIP lounge at the station for a short chill out before heading back to Ollantaytambo.
In summary, the decision to do a one-night stay in Belmond was one of the best moments in this part of the trip. A very satisfied customer indeed!