One of the most affordable Park Hyatt hotels is in Argentina’s wine country — but is it worth it?

Mar 17, 2022

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There’s a lot to love about Argentina, from the world-renowned Malbecs its vineyards produce to the striking natural wonders of Salta and Patagonia and the mouthwatering steaks you can get in practically any restaurant. That’s why the country was high on my list to visit as soon as easing COVID restrictions made it possible.

While I’d consider Buenos Aires a must-see stop, for this trip, I opted instead to spend a long weekend in Mendoza, the heart of Argentina’s wine country. My February trip took me there for the tail end of summer before temperatures started to cool down, so I was able to book a mix of outdoor activities and wine tastings.

A Hyatt free night certificate that was about to expire presented the perfect opportunity to save some cash on a night at the Park Hyatt Mendoza. The hotel’s white, neoclassical facade is unmistakable from the outside, and the location was central for everything I wanted to do during my wine country getaway. But would the experience measure up? Here’s how my three-night stay went.

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In This Post

Booking

Redeeming your World of Hyatt points for the Park Hyatt Mendoza is easy and can present a lot of value. It’s a Category 3 hotel, so a standard room will only cost you 12,000 points per night.

You can top off your World of Hyatt point balance by transferring your Chase Ultimate Rewards points to the program instantly at a 1:1 ratio.

(Screenshot from hyatt.com)

Still, be sure to compare cash rates, which can be very inexpensive. My strategy was use a mix of points and cash: I booked my first two nights at the Park Hyatt Mendoza for $384 total, including taxes and fees. As a  World of Hyatt Discoverist elite, I earned 5.5 points per dollar spent, or 2,112 points, for two nights.

For my third night, I used my Hyatt free night certificate, valid for Category 1-4 properties, up to 15,000 points. TPG values World of Hyatt points at 1.7 cents each, so the full value of this certificate is worth more like $255.

Redeeming my free night certificate for this property was perhaps not the best value, since cash rates for my dates were just $192 per night and Hyatt recently devalued a ton of properties by moving them to a higher category. But, with fewer properties eligible for this free night certificate, I didn’t mind redeeming it for an award night (rather than letting it expire later on).

Related: Suddenly, my Hyatt free night certificates feel nearly worthless — book these 24 hotels now

Location

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

The Park Hyatt Mendoza is located in the heart of the action, sitting on Plaza Independencia, a vibrant green space where events and live music are held. Mendoza is a small city that gives off a vibe of Spain in the summertime, with no shortage of restaurants, bars and cafes within a 15-minute walk.

Mendoza International Airport (MDZ) is located on the outskirts of the city, and the 20-minute taxi ride to the hotel cost me just $7 each way. With less than a dozen departures per day, the airport is speedy and efficient, so there’s no need to come particularly early for your departure. In fact, I arrived at the airport two hours early and was told to wait another half hour before I could even go through security.

Of course, Mendoza is most famous as a wine region. It sits in the Andes foothills but the weather is mostly warm and dry, making it possible to produce excellent wines.

There are several individual sub-zones near and around the city of Mendoza where wine is produced, including Lujan de Cuyo, Maipu and the Uco Valley, all of which are located within a two-hour drive of the center city. Of the bunch, Maipu is the closest, as it’s less than a 30-minute drive away.

Wine tours are all the rage here, but did you know that many of them are done via bike? You can either book a guided tour — and the Park Hyatt Mendoza will happily help you arrange this, along with other activities — or do a self-guided tour if you want to save some cash. There are many bike rental shops scattered around Maipu, and for under $10 or so, you can rent a bike all day and cycle through wine country at your own pace (and leisure).

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

There are protected bike paths that are relatively flat, but you’ll definitely get a good workout after hours of wine tasting.

If you need a break from sipping vino, there are outdoor activities aplenty in Mendoza. The Park Hyatt Mendoza is located about a 20-minute walk from the entrance of General San Martin Park. It’s an enormous urban park that’s quite hilly, so be sure to pack a good pair of running shoes or hiking boots.

Last but not least, I highly recommend that you book a hiking tour to Aconcagua, the highest mountain in South America, which is near the border with Chile. The Park Hyatt Mendoza arranged my tour with a local company, and it was a full-day excursion from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Standout features

  • The food was the most memorable part of my stay. The steakhouse, Grill Q, served the classics: Argentinian steak paired with local Malbec. Daily hot breakfast was included and served from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m, and the Park Hyatt doesn’t skimp on quality. I’m still dreaming of the fresh watermelon and perfectly fluffy waffles that I had every morning.
  • The hotel’s entrance was gorgeous and looked like you were entering an art museum rather than a hotel lobby thanks to a grand piano, a trove paintings and sculptures and tons of natural light. I looked forward to having breakfast there each day or enjoying a glass of wine after dinner on the patio.
  • The hotel’s superb location is close to most points of interest in the city and a good base for exploring farther afield, including day-long wine-tasting itineraries and hikes in the Andes.
  • Hospitable front desk staff can help you arrange excursions and provide recommendations for Mendoza attractions.
  • My room had an oversize white marble bathroom that was large in comparison to the rest of the accommodation and stocked with tons of extra toiletries, fresh robes and plush slippers.

Related: Reviewing the Palacio Duhau, Park Hyatt Buenos Aires

Drawbacks

  • While the building exterior is jaw-dropping and exudes that upscale Park Hyatt aesthetic, the rest of the hotel wasn’t consistently sophisticated. Once you walked through the lobby, the rest of the building looked more like an outdated convention center.
  • My standard king room was unremarkable at best and was in desperate need of redecoration. There was no color scheme — just various hues of brown, from the dingy carpet to the drab wallpaper.
  • You can order room service from the Grill Q (steakhouse downstairs), but the steak I got was cold after it took more than an hour to get to my room. Next time, I’ll just dine in instead.
  • Menu prices at the hotel’s dining outlets carry a serious markup compared to local restaurants. Dinners will run you about $25 to $50, and potentially even more if you order wine. Don’t be afraid to venture out for a few meals, since Argentina is quite affordable on the whole.
  • The fitness facility was small with only a few (old) treadmills and a handful of machines. It would often get crowded, so I opted for hikes and strolls around the neighborhood instead.

The vibe

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

While the hotel is not a head-turner on all scores, the public areas of the Park Hyatt Mendoza still feel refined and elegant with classic touches like a sprawling, tree-shaded patio out front, architectural features like a grand spiral staircase and works of art carefully placed throughout the lobby.

That said, the rooms feel like they haven’t been refreshed in over a decade and that wear and tear has begun to show. The hotel also holds a casino, which makes the ambiance slightly more frenetic and less relaxing. You’re also likely to see a mix of business travelers and international visitors, so if you want a more laid-back experience in Argentina, try to spend more time exploring the streets of Mendoza and the surrounding wine regions.

The room

The hallways leading up to my room were wide, and the large windows provided great views of the city, which was nice because the corridors themselves were a bit bland.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

The room furnishings were mostly constructed from dark wood, which gave it a gloomy feel. The bathroom was located immediately to the right of the front door and had sliding doors.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

Further down the entry hall, a small cabinet held a hidden minifridge and a few other lackluster amenities, including small, complimentary water bottles along with instant coffee and tea packets. The lack of other snacks and drinks made this feel more like a budget motel than a Park Hyatt.

The air conditioning, when in use, was loud and created a banging noise throughout the night. The Wi-Fi was also painfully slow, making it hard to load anything other than emails on my laptop.

Some simple design choices could have elevated the room. While I’m not an interior design expert, ripping down the faintly patterned wallpaper, replacing the curtains with something lighter and getting rid of the office-like carpeting would make a huge difference, giving the illusion of a bigger and brighter room.

That said, the bed was dressed with crisp white linen sheets, and housekeeping came by every morning to replace them and clean the room so well it seemed as if nobody had been there in the first place.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

The bathroom was quite large in comparison to the bedroom, and the white marble made the space look much more elegant than the rest of the room.

I appreciated that the toilet, shower and tub suite and the closet were in three distinct parts of the bathroom. The rainfall shower was my favorite part, with excellent water pressure and hot water streaming within seconds of turning it on.

Toiletries were plentiful, though, and there was a sea sponge to use as a natural loofah.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

The robes were cozy, perfect for the sauna if you want to detox during your trip.

Power outlets were scarce in the room. There was one 120V and one USB outlet in the whole room; otherwise, you’ll need to bring your power adapters as the rest of the room contains 220V outlets.

I did like my view, which gave me a glimpse of the hotel pool and Andean foothills in the distance.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

I’m not sure if this hotel will ever be able to totally reach the standards of the Park Hyatt brand in other major cities, but some refurbishing would improve the aesthetic. For such a low price point, though, I’m not sure it mattered too much to me.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

Food and drink

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

I couldn’t stop talking to my friends and family about the food I had in Argentina.

I enjoyed a classic steakhouse dinner on my first night at the Grill Q, the hotel’s authentic Argentinian parrilla — and my tenderloin was cooked to medium-rare perfection. It was tender but not chewy, not to mention lightly salted to enhance the natural flavors of the meat. The chimichurri on the side was redolent with the flavors of olive oil, garlic, vinegar and chili — an excellent complement to the beef. A glass of Malbec was the obvious yet ideal pairing with the meal.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

As you can imagine, Argentina is a carnivore’s paradise. Even my Caesar salad came with bacon bits and grilled chicken — although the menu didn’t indicate that anywhere.

After having steak for five meals in a row, however, I was eventually craving something other than red meat. One night, I ventured to the Bistro M in the hotel, the same restaurant that served the breakfast buffet in the mornings. I decided opted for the salmon tartare and the salmon ravioli — both of which were very flavorful, fusing local ingredients in these creative dishes.

Breakfast provided a variety of hot and cold options. If you want healthy fare, there’s a yogurt bar with plenty of toppings (chia seeds, walnuts, fruit), but there are also fresh pastries and desserts.

I loved starting my days with breakfast on the patio, enjoying the fresh fruits and juices, made-to-order eggs and — I’ll say it again — those fluffy, mouthwatering waffles.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

Adjacent to the Grill Q, there was a lovely wine bar with an indoor-outdoor concept where you can relax or socialize with other hotel guests in a more casual setting.

Amenities and service

Given how much there is to do around Mendoza, I was surprised at how much time I actually spent on the property rather than exploring the surrounding area.

I spent one afternoon lounging at the pool, taking advantage of the hydration station and taking intermittent dips in the water to cool off from the scorching summer temperatures.

There was also a massive, two-floor casino with a huge bar where you could order food and drinks. For some nightlife in the comfort of your own hotel, the casino seemed like the place to be, though I didn’t linger here much.

The gym was functional but felt limited and dated for what’s supposed to be a high-end luxury hotel.

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

I skipped the gym altogether and beelined straight for the whirlpool tubs, sauna and steam room in the Kaua Spa, which are free to use for hotel guests. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to take a signature treatment like the olive oil body glow or the wine facial.

Accessibility

The Park Hyatt Mendoza has wheelchair-accessible facilities throughout the property, as there’s a ramp at the entrance, spacious hallways and two sets of elevators on either side of the hotel. The bathroom had hand rails and a phone on the wall next to the toilet.

However, it’s worth noting that the pool was rather small and did not have a chair lift.

Overall impression

(Photo by Stella Shon/The Points Guy)

The Park Hyatt Mendoza wasn’t perfect, but I still was able to look past its flaws and enjoy my stay thanks to its affordable price point. The hotel exceeded my expectations in a few categories, including food and drink offerings, location and proximity to activities, and friendly service.

At 12,000 points or $200 per night, this is among the most affordable Park Hyatt properties in the world. Sure, it may not be up to par with some of the more iconic hotels such as the Park Hyatt New York or the Park Hyatt Sydney, but I would gladly plan another stay at the Park Hyatt Mendoza on my next visit.

Featured photo courtesy of Park Hyatt Mendoza.

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