The Travel Boom in Cartagena, Colombia

Medellin Colombia
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Sofitel Legend in Cartagena

The colorful Caribbean city of Cartagena has been in the headlines a lot recently, as more and more international travelers discover its charms. This weekend’s Travel section of The New York Times focuses on "36 Hours in Cartagena", highlighting its historic streets, traditional food, beaches and “a nightlife that heats up long after the sun goes down.”

Additionally, a recent Bloomberg article describes the “high end hotel invasion” in this Latin American hot spot, as a slew of new international brands—including Four Seasons, Hilton, and InterContinental—prep to open hotels in the city. To quote Bloomberg: “It all started with a 2003 tax incentive introduced by Colombia's former President Álvaro Uribe. The law includes a 30-year income tax exemption for all hotel construction or remodeling projects started before 2017. Since it was implemented, Cartagena has added over 10,000 hotel rooms in 298 hotels, according to the tourism bureau.”

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New direct routes from JetBlue, Spirit Airlines, and Avianca has increased the number of international arrivals, and Delta and United Airlines may follow suit. Bloomberg reports that “the rate of passenger arrivals rose 183% over the past two years, reaching a record 3,042,570 in 2013.”

Pictured: The Sofitel Legend Santa Clara in Cartagena

Sofitel Legend in Cartagena

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