The Radisson Hotel Antofagasta is one of the prime hotel properties in this booming mining town in Chile.
Located with a prime ocean view it is accessed by many business visitors and indeed army personnel as a result of a military barracks across the road.
This is the second time I’ve stayed in the Radisson Hotel Antofagasta on what is also my second visit to the city. Demand must be high as the population has risen from around 160,000 just 8 years ago to half a million today.
My colleagues tried to book me into the ever popular Joy Casino however yet again it was full. So the Radisson Hotel in Antofagasta it is.
Inside the Radisson Hotel Antofagasta
I quite like this modern style hotel. They even present you with a voucher for a complimentary local cocktail called “Pisco Sour” in the Traders Bar or Bricks Restaurant. I tried it on my previous visit and not being a cocktail person I can’t say that it appealed to me. You have to appreciate the gesture though.
I was fortunate enough to be assigned a room on the top floor, that is the sixth floor. This had a clear view of the ocean which meant that I feel asleep and woke to the sound of the waves. Very idyllic.
Guests in The Radisson Hotel Antofagasta on lower floors may not appreciate the view so much. Whilst the hotel is relatively new there are some older buildings and a school between the hotel and the ocean. It seems that in Chile the older buildings remain and are not overruled by construction works. This can be a good thing or a bad thing depending upon your view.
My room in the Radisson Hotel Antofagasta was certainly spacious. There was a large king size bed which was very comfortable. Sadly I was unable to appreciate the true benefit of this as I was ill during my stay.
There is a sofa with a large coffee table and a work desk and chair. To be honest the chair by the work desk was pretty awful. Being sat on it for any length of time really hurt my back and I dare say led to bad posture. A clear de-motivator for working in your hotel room.
The Radisson Hotel Antofagasta also offers the all important complimentary wifi service. This is exactly as I remember from my trips a few years ago. It is not geared up to handle high demand usage. In the mornings at breakfast time it seemed to work reasonably well. However come the evening pages would not load, it was incredibly slow and almost unusable.
The bathroom was of a decent size. The shower was over a bath tub. The shower head was fixed to the wall but adjustable. The height was slightly too low for me and I had to crouch slightly to wash what little strands of hair I have left.
The room in the Radisson Antofagasta also had a well stocked mini bar with water, nuts, chocolate as well as soft and alcoholic drinks. I’m not one for using mini bars in hotels, even if I am on company expenses so I can’t tell you how pricey it was.
There is a large flat screen TV with a lot of TV channels, all in Spanish. There were even 2 versions of CNN, both in Spanish. I occasionally came across an American film in English (or should that be American English) with Spanish subtitles.
The Radisson Hotel Antofagasta has a short length outdoor pool, with ocean view. There is also a small exercise room with modern equipment.
I used the Brick’s Restaurant for breakfast as it seemed the easiest thing to do. It was a self service cold buffet, except for scrambled egg or a toaster you could use.
The buffet included around 4 different cereals including corn flakes which were not Kellogg’s (you can taste the difference, really you can). There were some fruit selections, yoghurt, a couple of fruit juices which didn’t taste fantastic. There was also some cold meats and a range of sweet cakes. Yes, cakes for breakfast. This seems like a South American tradition and they proved popular.
My main complaint about the breakfast was the room layout. The buffet table was in the centre of the room and the tables and chairs around it were too close. People were often squeezing by and knocking you. This was for two reasons, 1. they are too darn rude and cannot wait their turn and 2. there was not enough room to be two people deep between the buffet island and the next table. Being knocked about when you are trying to fill a bowl with corn flakes is not a great experience.
I opted for room service a few times as it seemed like a good time saving option. Food options were maybe not quite as wide? The in room booklet only listed two main dishes as available, that being chicken or fish (white fish). Healthy I know but hardly a vegetarian’s delight. I suspect more dishes were available on request. I once ordered the white fish only to be later told that they have run out of white fish. They could offer salmon or sea bass. I went for salmon which was satisfactory in filling a hole.
The Radisson Hotel Antofagasta did come into its own through the assistance of one female Receptionist. I was ill, not in a good way at all. I had a terrible headache, upset stomach and all the undesirable side effects that come with a poorly tummy.
The in-room booklet talked of medical services so I called down to Reception. The Receptionist offered to call a doctor yet I indicated that all I really needed was a Chemist (Pharmacy). She offered the use of one of the hotel taxis (I couldn’t see any licensed taxis in town so assume they are all private). I then enquired if the Chemist would speak English or just Spanish? At this point the kind lady offered to go along with me to assist.
I really appreciated this gesture. I really was not in a good way. I was feeling weak and most things were an effort. This lady was really kind and offered great service. It also turns out that she lived in the UK for 8 years so no wonder her English was very good.
I must admit that I like the modern style of the Radisson Hotel Antofagasta. It is clean, presentable and in most respects comfortable. However that chair for the desk in the bedroom was awful. The internet connection could certainly do with some investment or maybe it is down to the telecommunications available in the city.
I’d love to tell you more about the town of Antofagasta yet as you know I was ill in my free time. I am grateful to the lady on Reception who assisted me on getting some medication, even though it took time to take any effect.
I enjoyed waking up to the sound of the ocean and on one night I had a fantastic view of the sunset.
The Radisson Hotel Antofagasta has some faults. However overall it is good enough for my stays in this booming town.