Port au Prince hotels are very limited since the devastating 2010 earthquake, as many of the accommodations in the city were damaged or destroyed, or there were no staffers available to run them. However, there are still hotels and B&Bs available, and many of the older properties are undergoing extensive repairs in order to re-open bigger and better than they were in 2010.
One of the best is undoubtedly the Hotel Oloffson, located at #60 Avenue Christophe about two blocks behind the Presidential Palace and about 15 blocks inland from the sea in Port au Prince. Featured as the fictional Hotel Trianon in Graham Green’s 1966 novel, “The Comedians,” it has been prominent in the history of Haiti. It is a Gothic gingerbread mansion built in the nineteenth century for the wealthy Sam family. One member of the Sam family served as President of the country from 1896 to 1902, and the mansion was used as a military hospital during occupation by the United States. A sea captain from Sweden named Oloffson turned it into a hotel in 1935 after the occupation. It has been a hotel ever since, although it fell into near ruin during the reign of the Duvaliers. Since 1987, it has been operated by the American-born musician David A. Morse who came to Haiti to study voodoo drums. He formed the protest band RAM, and the hotel is full of art and artifacts from Haitian voodoo. This is one of the few city structures to survive the 2010 with little damage; all staff and guests also survived.
Some people will argue that the Karibe Hotel is now the best hotel in the city since its complete renovation after the 2010 earthquake. It is set in lush gardens, and offers a spa, fitness center, swimming pool, and tennis court. There is also a nice restaurant and bar; this is an excellent place to come for goo Haitian food and cuisine. This is the hotel of choice for most business travelers as well as foreign dignitaries like Bill Clinton who come to oversee earthquake recovery efforts.
Le Plaza Hotel
Le Plaza Hotel
Among the Port au Prince hotels in the two-star category is Le Plaza Hotel, located at #10 Rue Capois (Champs de Mars) a couple blocks south of the Oloffson. It offers standard rooms with television, wifi in public areas, outdoor swimming pool, and the lovely La Terrasse bar and restaurant. There are 95 rooms and suites, as well as five meeting rooms, which has always made it popular among business travelers. Visitors can book online, as the phone service is still inconsistent, but there are excellent deals availble through Le Plaza's web booking service.
In spite of the earthquake devastation and Haiti’s reputation for poverty, crime, and corruption, there are signs of rebirth and new (and rebuilt) lodging options available. A good budget option is Walls Guesthouse, located in a secure compound that is popular with missionaries and the employees of other charitable organizations. This guesthouse was badly damaged in the earthquake, but now has a restaurant open, a number of rooms, and reliable electricity. Your water may not always be hot, and you may be sharing a bathroom, but it provides safe cheap lodging. It is family run, providing an opportunity for more interaction with local people and the Haiti culture. You will find it at Delmas 19, Rue Mackendal #8 off Avenue Martin Luther King in the western part of the city.
Perhaps the most famous of the Port au Prince hotels is the Hotel Montana. Its sad fame comes from its total destruction during the earthquake and the number of lives lost in the building’s collapse. It was in the news for weeks after the earthquake as survivors were pulled out. Lives lost included American college students, Canadian government officials, United Nations employees, and leaders of the United Methodist Committee on Relief. It was built in 1946, and was the most popular four-star property in the city for Western visitors when the earthquake struck. As of April 2011, it has been open with a few rooms, operating swimming pool, good restaurant, and a fabulous view over the bay.