What $500 Buys in Lima

Steven Noble

No longer just a stopover on the way to Machu Picchu, Peru’s historic capital, Lima, is having a moment as well, and the recent expansion of the Jorge Chávez International Airport is expected to double tourism in the next year. With increasingly dynamic restaurant and shopping options and exciting new hotels on the way, there’s never been a better time to plan a trip.

Compiled by Candice Chan and John Wogan

A four-course lunch for six at El Mercado, a lively cevicheria that debuted last summer from renowned Lima chef Rafael Osterling. Inventive dishes like grilled octopus in chile-pepper sauce are served in a canopy-covered room with wooden tables and rattan-backed chairs. rafaelosterling.com.

A pair of José Francisco Ramos heels, a Maria Luisa Negri lace dress and an amethyst necklace by Marino Mixán at Trend Studio, a nine-month-old boutique that stocks only Peruvian designers. trendstudioperu.com.

A cultural tour for two with top South American travel specialist Dehouche. The well-connected guides have access to some of Lima’s most exquisite private art collections, from ancient Incan tapestries to contemporary Latin American sculptures and paintings. dehouche.com.

A firming coca massage, a bio-lifting facial and a pedicure for two at the spa at Hotel Paracas, which opened last summer in Paracas. Nicknamed “the Hamptons of Lima” because of its beautiful beaches, this coastal town is an ideal day trip from the capital city. starwoodhotels.com.

Ten appetizers for four, including grilled scallops and an Andean potato tortilla, a bottle of wine and dessert, at Mesa 18 at the Miraflores Park Hotel. The outdoor terrace at this six-month-old spot sits near the Playa La Estrella and is decorated with comfy white sofas and wrought-iron tables. mesa18restaurante.com.pe.

As of January, 1 Peruvian nuevo sol = 36 cents