Ecuador Adventure, Oct 2010

Svjetlana Miocinovic

Lodge at Bellavista was so-so in terms of the room itself. We were staying in a bamboo house suite which was really small with a cramped bathroom, and the walls were thin. The food was simple but tasty. I liked the communal dining room - everybody got to hang out together and we met some fun people. The big surprise was that they somehow knew about my husbands birthday and made him a cake! That was very special. The location and surrounding hikes/scenery was wonderful (especially the waterfall hike). So overall I liked Bellavista very much, but wish the room itself was more comfortable. Hacienda La Porvenir was amazing. We had a very comfortable suite in the annex building - room was big enough, bathroom was very modern and large enough and bed had nice soft comforter (the bed itself was a double which was little small but we are used to california king at home so it is unfair to compare). The room had electrical heater which kept it warm. The food was amazing, wonderful soups, meats, desserts. The hacienda was very nicely decorated. They also have a great common area where most travelers would hang out so again we met a lot of nice people. The staff was amazing, they were so nice and caring. They were filling us up with large quantities of sunfo tea when we got little sick and would check up on us, and bring warm waterbottles to the room. There were couple of small glitches with the hot water and electricity and they handled it in a very timely and professional manner. Overall, I give it 5*. Also of note, all three hotels had plentiful hot water which is a big plus! The horseback tour at El Porvenir was incredible. We got dressed in ponchos and chaps (there is a reason for the outfit other than just the photos) and went riding around the foothills of a volcano for 3-4 hrs, enjoying amazing scenery on the way. And even though the horse fell on my husband (it was funnier than it sounds and no injuries) and we finished the ride in rain and hale (hence the outfit), it was my favorite part of the trip. I was very impressed by the level of organization and quality of the trips and staff involved. Marisa and Laura who helped me plan the trip were incredibly helpful.