The bishop of Arequipa at the end of the 19th century, Manuel Segudo Ballon, lived in La Casa de Melgar. Ballon organized an expedition to "El Misti" volcano to erect the cross on the top of the mountain, holding a mass on January 1, 1900 to commemorate the occasion.
The hotel gets it's name from Mariano Melgar, a Peruvian poet, who lived in La Casa temporarily. He spent the majority of his life fighting for Peru's independence from Spain. During the 19th century, he became one Peru's most prominent romantic poets and was especially known for his love poems known as 'yaravies'.