La Casa Del Suizo is a traquil Amazonian Refuge located on the shore of Ecuador's majestic Napo River and a stone's throw away from the eastern slopes of the Andes Mountains. Perched comfortably above the riverbank and the small Quechua village of Ahuano, La Casa del Suizo overlooks vast expanses of the surrounding tropical rainforest environment and is a great place to begin an Amazon tour.
In the eastern skirts of the Andes Mountains and on the shore of Ecuador's Napo River, one can find Ahuano, a small but growing Quichua Indian village. It was here in this Amazon hamlet that Swiss expatriate Beny Ammeter decided to open a general store in 1985. In those days, when foreign travelers found their way to Ahuano and needed a place to stay, they were inevitably directed to "La Casa del Suizo": The Swiss Man's House. Happy to receive visitors from afar, Beny warmly welcomed them into his home. Within a short time, his residence became so popular that he decided to construct several cabins to better accommodate the steady flow of travelers. This was the beginning of La Casa del Suizo, which today offers first class accommodations and international fame.
Room at Casa del Suizo in Ecuador's Amazon Basin
Each of the 75 modern, comfortable rooms offers 24-hour electricity, hot water, a refreshing ceiling fan and an exquisite view that may be peacefully absorbed from the privacy of one's own terrace. With a magnificent panorama of the Napo visitors may enjoy our swimming pool, outdoor dining area and pool bar, which offers an array of delicious tropical drinks. The hotel's dining rooms offer a wide variety of both Ecuadorian and international dishes, and our buffets cater to vegetarians. International telephone service is conveniently available in our reception area.
La Casa del Suizo has direct radio contact with Quito as well as permanent telephone communication. In case of a minor medical need, there is a medical center located in the town of Ahuano (Adjacent to Casa del Suizo) where guests may be treated. For emergencies, there is a well-equipped regional hospital in Tena, 25 km away from La Casa del Suizo.
Drinks are not included in your package, and may be paid on the last night of your stay in cash, travelers checks or credit card. Please note that the minimum credit card charge is $20.
There are two routes to get to La Casa del Suizo, if departing from Quito, Ecuador's capital, take the North Route, if coming from the South of Ecuador take the South Rote:
The north route: The shortest route coming from Quito to La Casa del Suizo is the "North Route". Over land, along a scenic stretch of road, which takes us out of the majestic Andes highlands, Quito Papallacta Baeza Tena - Ahuano and down into the jungle. This route is 220 Km long, during the trip there are several opportunities to stop for photographs, overlooking lush green valleys and sparkling waterfalls.
The south route: It is also by road taking the "South Route" Quito Ambato Banos Puyo Ahuano. If coming from Quito it is a 360 Km long, and it can take up to 7 hours. However, if coming from the south of Ecuador this would be the best option.
Be it the North or the South routes, our destination is Punta Ahuano, a tiny port town on the North bank of the Napo River where canoes await for a 20-minute ride downstream to la Casa del Suizo.
La Casa del Suizo is a tranquil Amazonian refuge located on the shore of Ecuador's majestic Napo River and a stone's throw away from the eastern slopes of the Andes Mountains. Perched comfortably above the riverbank and the small Quichua Indian village of Ahuano, La Casa del Suizo overlooks vast expanses of the surrounding tropical rainforest enviroment.
Each morning guests may trek, paddle and swing through the lush, primary rainforest which surrounds the Lodge - a great way to enjoy your Ecuador tour. The native guides posses vast knowledge of the diverse local fauna and flora, as well as the medicinal uses of many plants.
A variety of activities are available: One of the hikes ends with a balsa raft adventure down the Napo river and back to the Hotel. Guests may also visit a local Quichua Village, where one can watch amazing blowpipe demonstrations and the preparation of chicha, a local alcoholic beverage.
The Misicocha Adventure consists of a walk through primary and secondary forest trails, along which it is possible to observe distinct species of birds and insects as well as a great variety of trees and medicinal plants. The guides will explain how such plants are used not only in medicine, but also in construction and other important local activities. Along the trails guests may enjoy several opportunities for adventure, such as hanging bridges, and vines for swinging from tree to tree. After the walk you may choose to eat lunch in the jungle, and later live the incredible experience of building and navigating a raft! On a small river island your guide will show you how to tie balsa logs together, so those who wish can float down the Napo for about an hour back to La Casa del Suizo.
In the afternoons it is possible to visit a local Quichua Indian family at the village of Ahuano. Here we may learn about several aspects of traditional Quichua culture: Our host will show us how to make chicha, a typical beverage (which of course all may taste), and demonstrate the spiritual cleaning rituals still practiced today throughout the surrounding community. Finally, all may participate in a blowgun target-shooting contest but don't expect to beat the natives! The duration of this visit is around 4 hours, and from 5 to 6 hours if you choose to have lunch in the forest.
For our more physically limited guests, who do not wish or are not able to participate in all of the activities listed above, we have alternatives such as The Island: A one-hour walk along a totally flat river island, where one may observe a great variety of plants and insects.
It is also possible to visit an artisan in the village of Ahuano, who will demonstrate how the traditional Quichua ceramics are created, painted, and hardened.
There are also options to visit a butterfly farm, the AmaZoonica, and half and full day sea kayaking opportunities for guests that are 12 years of age and older.