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Casa Gangotena: A Quito Hotel for the Five Senses

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Some of the best experiences in Quito can be had in and around one place: Casa Gangotena, the Old Town’s very own boutique hotel, a place to engage all 5 senses. Experience the sights, sounds, scents, tastes and touches of Quito by staying at our hotel.

The sights

A feast for the eyes and the soul, the sight that most defines Casa Gangotena is the view over Plaza San Francisco, not from afar but as one of its most defining elements. The twin white spires of the religious complex, the iconic buzz of the square itself and the domed and mountainous skyline of Quito Old Town are ever present whether you’ve risen at dawn to watch the sunrise, you’re having breakfast at the window table in the restaurant, or relaxing in your room’s bathtub looking out over the city at dusk… The backdrop to any stay in our Quito hotel is the emblematic plaza, the true heart of historic centre, from all angles, in every light, from sunrise to the dark of night.

The sounds

To really hear the sounds that ensconce Casa Gangotena into its Quito Old Town home, you have to throw open the window. Yes, that same maximum-strength window that sound-proofs your stay and allows you the most peaceful of nights’ sleeps. With the barrier removed between you and Plaza San Francisco the sounds of the square become your soundtrack. Listen out for the plaintive cry of: “’mmmmercio de hoy! El Comercio de hoy!” of the newspaper vendor, and the cracking flap as a legion of pigeons in flight. According to legend, these birds are the lost souls of devils searching for crafty Cantuña, the workman said to have tricked the Devil himself. Awakening to these sounds is to awaken like a true Quiteño, roused by the motions of the city.

The scents

You don’t have to set foot out of your Quito hotel before you have smelled the scents on the breeze wafting from the surrounding traditional neighbourhood. It is the aroma of dried herbs and spices from the shop across the street on Calle Cuenca that drifts into the garden: warm, rich and exotic. These colourful seasonings will recur during your stay here, in the subtle flavours of the Mestizo Cuisine at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Within the hotel, a familiar, citrusy scent layers over the air, that of the hundreds of orchids in the patio and corridors, echoing the plethora of these lovely flowers found across the length and breadth of Ecuador.

The tastes

Your first taste as you enter Casa Gangotena is the same as that enjoyed by many Ecuadorians arriving at their destination after a long journey: agua de frescos, the traditional welcome drink. Stained fuchsia pink by the super-cereal amaranth and the drink’s all-natural and organic ingredients, the refreshing beverage contains seven different fresh herbs, including chamomile and lemon verbena, which have myriad health benefits aside from cooling the body and quenching thirst.

Return to our Quito hotel after 4 P.M. after a day of exploring Quito’s Old Town and the hotel’s signature taste is darker and richer: Café Quiteño, a kind of Quito high tea, is served with premium local coffee or a delicious range of herbal and fruit teas. It is this respect for Ecuadorian products, flavours, and traditions that makes the Casa Gangotena experience so unique, and so entrenched in its wonderful surroundings.

The touches

There are many things to delight your sense of touch at Casa Gangotena: the softest bed sheets, the opulent velvet sofas and the cool marble pillars. But these are things that could be found in any luxury hotel around the world. The feeling that sets Casa Gangotena apart is less tangible: the feeling of being looked after, of being absolutely at home in Quito Old Town. It’s the warm smiles of the staff and the natural attentiveness of the concierge around the lovely spaces of the hotel that leave the lasting feeling at Casa Gangotena.
And-the-feeling-of-home


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