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“Fairly Good” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Luna International Hostel

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Luna International Hostel
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Del Hotel Meson, 1 Cuadra al Este, Esteli, Nicaragua   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #4 of 12 Specialty Lodging in Esteli
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Auckland Region, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Fairly Good”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2014

The Luna was a nice place to stay. It is the place recommended in Lonely Planet, and accordingly there has been some price inflation. Dorms were $8 and private rooms with private bathroom $25US.c

The rooms were clean, and they supplied water for a nominal charge (5 cordoba for 1.5L.). Towels were provided and the hot water worked well.

Contrary to Lonely Planet and their sign, absolutely no English is spoken, except by the owner (who we only saw in passing) and by a tour operator / staff member at the associated cafe.

In a decent location. If you walk a few blocks there are some good places to eat.

A taxi from here to either of the bus terminals is 10C per person.

They also arrange cigar tours to a factory called Santiago cigars . This was interesting, although it was disappointing to see the reasonably poor (and bad for their health) conditions of the workers who get paid Peanuts, whilst the smarmy looking American owner drives a brand new Chevy and seems to be living the high life. A cheap place to buy legit Nicaragua cigars though if you smoke or want them as gifts.

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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72 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    20
    28
    15
    8
    1
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Oxford, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2014

Nice dorm rooms. Hostel small but clean, staff friendly. Café across the road (sister to the hostel) was nice with simple reasonably priced food. Towels available for $1. Apparently has lockers but none were available when we were there despite the hostel being quite empty. Word of warning that most things seem to be closed in Esteli over weekends (ie tobacco tours/the church etc).

Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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London, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2013

We stayed at the Luna Hostel in November and arranged a 3 day trip up to the Miraflor reserve from the associated Treehugger tourism office. It was great to be able to eat, sleep and arrange a trip all at the same place. The staff were very helpful and there were English speaking staff on hand at Treehuggers to assist with booking our trip to the Miraflor reserve. Everything for our trip was arranged through Treehuggers and we were able to leave our big bags at the Luna Hostel while we travelled to Miraflor. The hostel was clean and the rooms were big and the food at Cafe Luz was just delicious, all organic and locally grown. It is also so great that the profit from the hostel, cafe and tourism office are used to fund social development projects. We thoroughly enjoyed the Luna Hostel, Miraflor and Cafe Luz and would recommend all three.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Brussels, Belgium
Top Contributor
71 reviews 71 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2013 via mobile

I stayed here for 3 nights in December. It is a great Hostal. Very clean and friendly. Delicious free coffee is available from their cafe across the street and good tourism information too. Highly recommended.

Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
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Denver, Colorado
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2013

I stayed here only one night (in May of 2012, this review is long overdue--ignore the listing of December 2012, it's the farthest back Tripadvisor would let me select), but was so incredibly grateful for the large, clean shower with consistent water pressure (by Nicaraguan standards--my fellow travelers who tried to shower in the morning were not so lucky) and comfortable, clean beds. I never felt unsafe in Esteli, but it was reassuring to have a guard present at the gate throughout the night.
The coffee at Cafe Luz is some of the best I had in the country. They have a nice combination "gourmet" breakfast and lunch items and local flavors. You can find some very nice handmade wares for sale there as well. We spent one evening enjoying conversation over cigars. It takes on a "lounge" feel at night, which is nice if you are looking to relax but don't want to go to a discoteque (I'm not even sure if there are any in Esteli as I didn't go looking for one).
The location is great for being able to walk throughout the main sections of town.
The people at Cafe Luz will connect you with a wonderful homestay in the Miraflor nature reserve just north of town if you are interested. I highly recommend taking advantage of that! The people in the community of Sontule, with whom they will connect you, are the best hosts!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 16, 2013 via mobile

Had a short but sweet stay at this hostel. The bed was comfortable, the dorm was spacious and the bathroom facilities were very pleasant for hostel. The cafe next door was friendly, had a good atmosphere and the food was good. On top of that, I loved the cigar tour they organised.

No complaints at all. Even better when you know what money you part with is going to a good cause.

Phil

  • Stayed November 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Regensburg
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2013

We followed 'our pick' in the LP and were kind of disappointed. Even that everything was spotless clean, our dorm was lokeded right next to the busy street at some bars (the wall seems to be build out of paper) and that was pretty annoying! Also the LP said, that the hostel provides very good information (that was the main reason for us to come here), but the staff sent us to a tourist info next door, where we also could have went, when staying in a different hostel. The 8$ are totally unreasonable: no kitchen or fridge or breakfast. Only the free cafe next door was excellent.
We moved to Hostal Soneti the next day, where we got a privet room for the same money and a stuff who could proved information even in English!

  • Stayed November 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Additional Information about Luna International Hostel

Address: Del Hotel Meson, 1 Cuadra al Este, Esteli, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Esteli Department > Esteli
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 12 Specialty Lodging in Esteli
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A central, hassle-free stay in the heart of Esteli with access to everything the region has to offer - and just a step away from our community-tourism office and the popular Cafe Luz restaurant and bar. We donate all our profits and resources to facilitate community-driven projects in rural and urban areas in northern Nicaragua: non-profit social enterprise creating social change. Reception Open 7am to 10pm | Access 24 hours |Wi-Fi | Laundry Service | Cable TV | Night guard on duty 10pm to 8am | English and Spanish spoken | Free organic coffee and tea | Purified water available | Fluffy towels available | Safe for valuables | Seating and hammock area | Attractive patio garden ... more   less 

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