Tuesday, August 14, 2018


By Eva Fydrych

Tropical Vibes & Colonial Architecture
Welcome to Cartegena de Indias!

Photo by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine

Colourful Cartagena is a port city on Colombia’s Caribbean coast. The walled Old Town, founded in the 16th century, features cobblestone streets and beautiful colonial buildings. Boasting a tropical climate all year round, the city is also a popular beach destination. Since the average temperatures don't change much, there is no better or worse time to visit Cartagena.

Don't miss: Isla de Barú, with white-sand beaches and palm trees, and the Islas del Rosario, known for their coral reefs.

From luxury accommodation to trendy boutiques and restaurants, this charming city has more to offer than you would ever expect. Are you ready to take a look?

Eva Fydrych at Casa Cochera del Gobernador (Dress by Vicky Tcherassi)


Life can't really get any better if you are staying in one of Cartagena's luxury hotels

Tcherassi Hotel & Spa, located in the heart of the historic district (Calle del Curato #38-99), is the quintessence of the city. The property was restored by a Colombian architect, Álvaro Barrera, and by New York-based interior designer Richard Mishaan who was named by Architectural Digest as one of the Top 100 world designers.

Featuring a unique blend of fashion, hospitality, and nature, this stylish hotel offers not only an unforgettable experience, but also a glimpse into the world of Silvia Tcherassi’s creations.

Rooftop swimming pool (Photo courtesy of Tcherassi Hotel & Spa) Click to enlarge

Inner vertical garden at Tcherassi Hotel & Spa (Photo by Eva Fydrych)

Spacious bathroom at Tcherassi Hotel & Spa (Photo by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)

Staying at Casa Cochera del Gobernador (Calle Cochera del Gobernador #33-23) is an experience in itself. 

"This building, whose origins that go back to the 16th Century make it one of the oldest in the entire city, has been formerly renovated combining its unique colonial style with the most up-to-date elegance. Elements like the balustrades, courtyards, and halls keep alive the ancient essence of the building, attracting you to enter and discover a piece of its enchanting history." - Casa Cochera del Gobernador

Tastefully decorated rooms feature pastel colour palette and all modern amenities expected at a five-star hotel. Don't miss a small outdoor pool and a hot tub located on the roof. It's a great place to unwind and relax in the evening.

Situated in the historic centre as well, Sophia Hotel offers fantastic views of the city's rooftops and delicious cocktails by the pool. This luxurious property won't disappoint even the most demanding travellers.

"Sophia Hotel is a perfect establishment for business travellers who are not only looking for a quiet and charming space but also for appropriate spaces to organise meetings and events. To do that, the hotel offers one event rooms (CALLIOPE) where inspirational vocations could be expresses in any meeting, conference or exhibition." - Sophia Hotel

Sophia Hotel (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)

Design details at Sophia Hotel

View from Sophia Hotel (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)


Often referred to as Colombia's culinary capital, Cartagena offers a wide variety of dining options.

Combining tradition with innovation, Alma restaurant (Calle de la Universidad #36-44) is one of the best places to eat in the city. Coastal Colombian cuisine is not only colourful but filled with flavours that engage all of your senses.

Alma's unique location, inside the luxury Casa San Agustin, makes it a perfect spot for a romantic candlelight dinner.

Tuc Tuc, the creatively decorated restaurant at Tcherassi Hotel & Spa, is a must-visit place in Cartagena. Offering a tasty mix of flavours from around the world, Tuc Tuc restaurant is a refreshing option for everyone looking for casual dining with a twist.

The delicious breakfast, open to non-guests as well, has a small buffet and a’la carte menu options available. Freshly squeezed juices and a variety of tropical fruits are the perfect way to kick-start your day.

Dining in Colombia wouldn't be complete without checking out the local coffee scene. Our favourite coffee shops in the city included Juan Valdez Café (there are several locations of this Colombian coffee chain in Cartagena), El Café de Centro Hotel (Carrera 5 #34-80), and Serano Gourmet in Getsemani (Calle 30 #8B-108 Local 2).

Passion fruit mousse with coconut, Alma restaurant (Photo by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)


Located in a colonial building with a lush courtyard, ST. DOM (Calle Santo Domingo #33-70) is a stunning concept store similar to 10 Corso Como in Milan or iconic Colette in Paris (now closed).

It won't be an exaggeration to say that ST. DOM is one of the most impressive retail spaces in the city and it's definitely worth visiting – even if you are not planning to update your wardrobe anytime soon. It's a wonderful place to get familiar with both emerging and established Colombian designers and stay on top of the current fashion trends. Don't miss it!

Large department malls where you can find not only shops and restaurants, but also several entertainment options for the whole family, include Caribe Plaza, Mall Plaza El Castillo, and Plaza Bocagrande.

ST. DOM (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)

Creative window display in one of the boutiques

Visiting ST. DOM (Calle Santo Domingo #33-70)

Inside ST. DOM (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)


One of the best ways to explore the Old Town is taking a Free Walking Tour. Available every day at 10am and 4pm, it's a great way to meet other travellers as well. Local guides have not only lots of knowledge and experience, but they also have very engaging personalities and offer tours both in English & Spanish. Highly recommended! 

Getsemani artistic district is one of the hippest new neighbourhoods in Cartagena. If you would like to stay in this part of the city and save some money on accommodation at the same time, El Arsenal Hostel Boutique (Calle del Arsenal #10-13) is the place to be. This hidden gem has a small courtyard with an outdoor pool, lively bar with colourful murals, and a fun, laid-back atmosphere. Read more about Getsemani here.

Colourful buildings in the Old Town (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)

Sculpture by Colombian artist Fernando Botero 

El Arsenal Hostel Boutique (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)


  • Colombia has the third highest coffee production rate in the world (after Brazil and Vietnam).
  • Cartagena was officially founded under the Spanish Empire in 1533, by Pedro de Heredia, in the former location of the indigenous Caribbean Calamarí village.
  • Cartagena de Indias is a UNESCO world's heritage site. You can find more information here.

Traditional dress (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)

Tcherassi Hotel & Spa (Calle del Curato #38-99) 

Stylish interior design at Tcherassi Hotel & Spa

Tcherassi Hotel & Spa - Lobby

 Design by Silvia Tcherassi 

Rooftop hot tub at Casa Cochera del Gobernador

Warm welcome at Casa Cochera del Gobernador

Budget accommodation in Getsemani district - El Arsenal Hostel Boutique 

Colombian coffee at Serano Gourmet, Getsemani (Calle 30 #8B-108 Local 2)

Pizza en el Parque (Calle Segunda de Badillo #36-153)

Clock Tower Gate - main entrance to the Old Town

Outdoor pool at MANSION TCHERASSI - Silvia's first hotel in Cartagena 

Fashion designer Silvia Tcherassi - black & white portrait at MANSION TCHERASSI 

Dress by Johanna Ortiz, ST. DOM (Photos by Eva Fydrych / Fashion Studio Magazine)

See you in Colombia!

*Special thank you to Tcherassi Hotel & Spa and Casa Cochera del Gobernador for hosting us in September 2017.

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