Dominican Republic, Dominican Republic

Casas del XVI

Rates from (inc tax)$399.00

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (21USD), via, using today’s exchange rate.


Charismatic colonial casas


16th-century streets of Santo Domingo

Dominican Republic hotel Casas del XVI invites guests to quantum leap back to the colonial era – with the added benefit of all mod cons, naturally. Two casas, in the centre of Santo Domingo's Unesco World Heritage site Colonial City, have been lovingly restored (dare we say, improved upon) and fashioned into seven luxury suites. However, a supernaturally helpful private butler, peaceful palm-strewn courtyards to siesta in and a bygone setting support the illusion that you’re a fresh-off-the-boat hidalgo paying homage to the New World.

Smith Extra

Get this when you book through us:

A bottle of wine on arrival


Photos Casas del XVI hotel – Santo Domingo – Dominican Republic

Need to know


Seven suites in two casas: one Superior and three Deluxe rooms in Casa Arbol (the ‘treehouse’) and three Luxury Rooms in Casa de los Mapas (the ‘house of maps’).


3pm, but flexible, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 12 noon; early arrivals can stash away their luggage and relax in the courtyard until their room is ready.


Double rooms from $399.00, excluding tax at 28 per cent.

Price information

If you haven’t entered any dates, the rate shown is provided directly by the hotel and represents the cheapest double room (including tax) available in the next 21 days.

Prices have been converted from the hotel’s local currency (USD510.72), via, using today’s exchange rate.

More details

Breakfast is included.


Former Dominican Republic president Ulises Heureaux resided in Casa Arbol from 1887–1889, and Casa de los Mapas is so called due to its many wall-hung maps, inspired by an itinerant cast of characters who’ve stayed over the years. The hotel’s inviting pumpkin-coloured library is irresistibly cosy; plonk down in a purple sofa with one of its small selection of books.

At the hotel

Courtyards, library, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: private butler, flatscreen TV, iPod dock, radio, free bottled water, air-conditioning and Antica Farmacista bath products.

Our favourite rooms

We love Casa del Arbol’s ‘pineapple room’, in the Deluxe category, where historic gravitas and island ebullience come together like a conquistador in Carmen Miranda headgear. Kitsch fruit-filled paintings, pineapple-shaped light fittings and a headboard with an elaborately carved – yes, you guessed it – will make you crave a piña colada.


Only guests in Casa de los Mapas’ Luxury Rooms have access to the unheated swimming pool in the inner courtyard. This pretty patch has grassy banks, tropical ferns and palm grass along one edge, and a smattering of day-beds; after sundown it’s lit by candelight.

Packing tips

A good book to read in the courtyard; we recommend Dominican-American writer Junot Díaz’s tragicomic tomes, which capture the island’s patois. Bring a Field Notes pad in which to sketch the varicoloured tropical birds that flock to the courtyard’s mango tree (in Casa Arbol) and potent bug spray to keep you bite-free while doing so.


The best beaches are found further afield, but there’s plenty to explore nearby; ask your concierge to plan a tour. If you'd like an in-casa spa treatment or personal-training session – whatever your whim – have a word with your butler.


Family groups are welcome. The Superior Room sleeps a family of four on two double beds, and a free baby cot can be added to Deluxe and Luxury Rooms. There are no special services, but butlers can arrange babysitting, child-friendly meals and baby kit.

Food and Drink

Photos Casas del XVI hotel – Santo Domingo – Dominican Republic

Top Table

Why eat inside when you could dine under a palm canopy, listening to birdsong, in a perfumed private courtyard?

Dress Code

Laid-back Caribbean cool: loungewear in bright carnival-inspired colours.

Hotel restaurant

The hotel operates on a bed and breakfast basis; each morning your butler will ask where you’d prefer to dine – in casa or courtyard – before laying out a tasty spread. Anything you’re hungering for can be prepared, but the cinnamon, chocolate-chip and banana pancakes, served with coffee and freshly squeezed tropical juices, are dreamy. The hotel can put together a bespoke private lunch or dinner menu on request (with some notice).

Hotel bar

Delicious Dominican rum – alongside a range of spirits and soft drinks – flows from each casa’s honesty bar (You’ll find one in Casa Arbol’s foyer and Casa de los Mapas’ kitchen), and your mayordomo can turn mixologist at a moment’s notice.

Room service

There’s a limited but delicious menu for in-room dining; your aim-to-please Jeeves can help if you’re hankering after something specific.


Photos Casas del XVI hotel – Santo Domingo – Dominican Republic
Casas del XVI
Calle Padre Billini No. 252
Ciudad Colonial
Dominican Republic


The hotel is a 25-minute drive from Las Américas International Airport ( There are direct flights from most major airports on the US eastern seaboard; from Paris, Madrid, Frankfurt, Munich and Dusseldorf in Europe; and most Caribbean islands. Transatlantic flights arrive via Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport and Hartsfield International, or Charles de Gaulle and Punta Cana airports; flights across the Pacific via San Francisco and Newark Liberty, or Portland and Hartsfield airports.


Driving isn’t recommended. It’s fairly easy to reach most destinations on foot, but arrive armed with a map: unmarked streets and confusing colloquial directions can leave even the most confident orienteer befuddled. If you wish to explore beyond the city there’s an Avis car-hire booth at the airport.

Worth getting out of bed for

Casas del XVI is an island stay for those who prefer touring Santo Domingo’s crumbling cathedrals and fortifications to topping up their tan. Colonial City earned its Unesco World Heritage stripes by keeping its 16th-century architectural gems in tip-top condition. The city’s most acclaimed sights are all within 20 minutes’ walk from the hotel, so – like Columbus – you can chart your own course or let the hotel’s concierge tailor a tour to your liking. Stop at Ozama Fortress (+1 809 686 02 22) and Alcázar de Colón (+1 809 686 86 57) residence on the three-hour ‘Old City Stroll’ or take a spiritual journey to the Iglesia Regina Angelorum and Convento de los Dominicos (+1 809 682 37 80, on the four-hour ‘Churches of the Colonial City’ tour. Gourmands with a penchant for rum can wash down caught-that-day seafood and calorific desserts laced with coconut and dulce de leche with heady amber spirits on the ‘Ron Barcelo Sugar and Rum Experience’, ‘Chocolate Clay and Sugar’ and ‘Flavours of the Old City’ tours. Nighttime tours, open-air theatre, golf challenges and day-trips to celebrate the Samana Harvest Festival are also offered.

The island’s best beaches are found further along the southern coast and in the laid-back Samaná Peninsula; however, Santo Domingo is home to Montesinos Beach, 10 minutes’ walk from the hotel, where locals meet to play beach games and sunbathe. It’s advisable to keep your beach frolicking on dry land – the murky waters aren’t the most inviting. For full-on beach fun, continue your Caribbean getaway with a seaside stay at Casa del XVI’s sister hotels Casa Bonita or Sublime Samana.

Local restaurants

Dine on surf 'n' turf, mariscos (mixed seafood platters) and elegant tasting menus – we love the Rum Experience’s imaginative intoxicating dishes – at Pat'e Palo (+1 809 687 80 89,, a local-thronged European-style brasserie in Plaza de España. The terrace overlooks the Alcázar de Colón. A long row of stools cosying up to the bar makes Lulú (+1 809 687 83 60, one of Colonial City’s most sociable venues. Its lengthy tapas menu has internationally influenced dishes, including short-rib croquettes with Emmenthal and beef wontons. Sophia’s Bar & Grill (+1 809 620 10 11, –15-minutes’ drive from the hotel, on Calle 16 de Julio – serves high-end comfort food: truffled mac and cheese with lobster and Churrasco-style beef. Save room for calorific desserts and mugs filled with churros.

Local cafés

On the ground floor of the Hotel Conde de Peñalba, near a bustling shopping area, is Café Conde de Peñalba (+1 809 688 71 21, an excellent people-watching spot. The menu has reasonably priced international fare – burgers, sandwiches and a tasty brunch selection – alongside local dishes, including mashed plantain. The shaded terrace has views of Cathedral of Santa María la Menor (the New World’s first European cathedral) too.

Local bars

If you’re seeking piratical pursuits, forgo swashbuckling and skulduggery for the louche aspects of a sea rover’s lifestyle by knocking back rum-laced cocktails in El Mesón de la Cava (+1 809 533 2818, – a former pirate’s hideout. The restaurant and bar’s setting – inside the belly of a chandelier-lit grotto – is magical and the terrace is resplendent with vividly coloured ferns, palms and flowers.


Photos Casas del XVI hotel – Santo Domingo – Dominican Republic

Anonymous review

Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from Casas del XVI’s historic homesteads – in the Dominican Republic’s Colonial City – and unpacked their bottle of Mama Juana (a potent potion of rum, honey and red wine) and a ‘limping-devil’ carnival mask, their tales from the New World will be dispatched post-haste. Meanwhile, here’s a tea-stained missive to whet your appetite…

The neon-bright woodpeckers and narrow-billed todys look fittingly attired for an avian rave, perched in the branches of the mop-topped palms in Casas del XVI’s courtyard. If you don’t already feel like a fawned-over infanta, watching them flutter in and out will upgrade your holiday reverie to real-life Disney princess. These 16th-century casas inspire grandiosity: in their past lives they’ve been show homes for visiting royalty and a presidential des res. After a few nips and tucks they look as majestic as when they were built – turned out in timeless style with original floor tiles you’ll be tempted to prise up and pack in your suitcase (if you can style out having ‘desecrator of a Unesco World Heritage site’ on your rap sheet). So, assume your mantle as lord/lady of the house, and summon your personal butler for a rum cocktail that’ll leave you reeling before setting forth like Columbus to explore Santo Domingo’s mysterious past and vivacious present.

The Guestbook

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith Hotel with us, we’ll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what other Smith members had to say in Casas del XVI’s Guestbook below.

We loved

Lounging by the pool!

Don’t expect

A huge in house menu.


Stayed on 21 Jan 2016