Santiago may not be blessed with the range of hotels that Havana has -- in fact, it has less than a half-dozen hotels within easy reach of downtown -- but it has enough variety among its few hotels that most guests shouldn't have trouble finding a decent place to stay at any price level. Only one of Santiago's major hotels is within the historic district, which is lively and fun, but too noisy and chaotic for many visitors. Most of the tourist hotels are on the outskirts of the city, an easy and inexpensive cab ride away.
Especially popular in Santiago are casas particulares; the city has hundreds of state-sanctioned private homestays, including some of the coolest casas in Cuba, several in historic homes in the heart of the old district and others in tranquil, leafy suburbs. Reparto Sueño alone has dozens of casas.
For those who might prefer to stay outside the city as an overnight excursion or even with plans to make a day trip out of Santiago, there are a couple of hotels along the coast and near some of the outlying attractions.
Inexpensive -- There are scores of casas particulares in downtown Santiago. You can also try Casa Bertha Peña, Calle Heredia 308 between Pío Rosado and Porfirio Valiente (tel. 22/62-4097; email@example.com), a very centrally located house with two rooms. The second bedroom, dominated by a handsome, wood-and-marble dresser, is buried farther into the house and may be quieter. Casa Pedro Guillermo Martí Vazquez, Calle Corona 805 between Santa Rita and San Carlos (tel. 22/62-0101; firstname.lastname@example.org), a large house with an enormous front living room with original tiles and scarlet furniture, has two rooms. The one at the back of the house is larger. The house has large, unusual dado tiling of egrets catching fish. Casa María de la Cruz Figueroa, Calle Rey Palayo 83 between Reloj and Calvario (tel. 22/62-2152; email@example.com), is run by a very friendly family and has two rooms: one fairly spacious room upstairs at the back of the house with a decent-size bathroom that opens onto a shaded roof terrace, and the other room on the ground floor. Casa Yuliett Ramos Duany [find], San Basilio 513 between Clarin and Reloj (tel. 22/62-0546; firstname.lastname@example.org), is a friendly household with young children. The two upstairs rooms are smartly furnished and are comfortable with plently of storage space. There's a front terrace and a roof terrace. Casa Leonardo y Rosa, Calle Clarín 9 between Aguilera and Heredia (tel. 22/62-3574), is a large and colonial house with an ornate green-and-cream facade. The front room has extraordinarily high ceilings, chandeliers, and wainscoting on the walls, but we prefer the room at the back of the house.