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“High Price but worth it” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Finca San Juan de la Isla

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Finca San Juan de la Isla
3.0 of 5 Bed and Breakfast   |   Empalme el Quino 200 mts norte. 2 km este., Altagracia, Isla de Ometepe 505, Nicaragua   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 4 Altagracia B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Knoxville, Tennessee
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
74 helpful votes 74 helpful votes
“High Price but worth it”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2014

This is a destination resort, meaning that you are paying to be on the grounds of the hotel. It is on the grounds of a 60 acre finca which grows plantains, raises cattle, makes cheese, and are starting to grow cacao. If you intend to be out all day everyday doing something from morning to dark, this is not the best value if you are just looking for a place to sleep, but it is well worth it for couples to relax in idyllic, absolutely private surroundings. The cabanas which front the beach of Lake Colciboca with a view of Volcan Madera cost us, with tax, $132 per night (January prices). The cabanas are finely finished, with a quality of workmanship hard to find in expensive hotels in Granada. The lake water is perfect for swimming and you can watch the sun rise over Lake Colciboca from your bed. You can leep well with either AC or fan, the rooms have a small refrigerator, and the bathroom is spacious with hot water showers. A good breakfast is included in the price. Lunch and dinner are done well, but by Nicaraguan standards are costly at $12. Wi Fi does not work in the cabins, but works at one of the restored farm buildings which serves as the office and has 4 rooms. Valentina and her gringo husband are helpful with transportation or information about things to do and tours, but in the typical Nica way without a hint of the hardsell. When you compare what Finca San Juan de la Isla offers to very nice hotels in Granada or Managua the price is worth it.

Room Tip: recommend the cabanas, can't comment on the other rooms
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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156 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (22)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
London, UK
Top Contributor
171 reviews 171 reviews
91 hotel reviews
Reviews in 92 cities Reviews in 92 cities
82 helpful votes 82 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 12, 2014

The Finca isi n the middle of nowhere and on the opposite side of the Island to the main ferry ports. Regarded as one of the best places to stay on Ometepe Island we were perhaps expecting slightly better.

We stayed in the main hacienda where there are four quite small rooms, the walls are wafer thin and you can hear everything that goes on next door. The rooms are painted in a dark brown colour which makes them seem very dark. A makeover in cream or white would certainly improve matters. There is a small shower room but hot water is scarce (and none on our first night).

We found the staff very helpful - on arrival our sink was leaking badly and they fixed this immediately. The young lady that seems to be running the Hotel section, Valentina, was extremely helpful and pleasant and is obviously well aware of the difficulty of running a hotel in such a location and I am sure with time things will get much better.

The food on our first night was from the small menu and was quite nice, the second night was New Years Eve and the buffet provided was rather limited and there was not really enough food supplied. As we had a very early start next morning we went to bed quite early so missed the fireworks.

The whole setting is rather nice though, the beach is volcanic sand and there is a lot of interesting birdlife. There are some newer rooms on stilts by the lakeside and I suspect they are probably nicer to stay in with their own terraces as well.

Room Tip: Rooms in the main Hacienda are small, dark and have paper thin walls. Avoid these and try and get a...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2014

We visited Finca San Juan de la Isla in Feb 2014. It was a relaxing beachside place to stay after a few days in hectic Granada and a long tour of Ometepe. It is located on the other side of Ometepe as all of the other big inns and resorts, and there is a working farm between the inn and the road, so the beach is peaceful and quiet.

The food was also excellent, and the kitchen made the best gallo pinto out of any place we tried. There are hammocks everywhere, which is especially relaxing when you want to have a Tona and read or take a nap.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, New York, United States
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2014

On our first trip to Nicaragua, we wanted to make sure to get in a variety of experiences, so we stayed in Granada a few nights, then went to a great hotel on the Pacific Ocean near San Juan del Sur and then took the trip to this tranquil eco-friendly farm to experience the lake and proximity to the volcanos.

It took some planning and time to get from our hotel on the Pacific to this place but was well worth the journey. Even taking the old wooden ferry from the mainland to Ometepe was a highlight. When we landed at Ometepe, the hotel's driver met us right away so we got to the hotel without any hassle.

Upon entering the finca's grounds, we were struck by the tranquility and unspoiled beauty, surrounded by banana plantations. We were in a cabin (the Chipewa Cabin), just a few steps from the lake and the "club house" where the meals were served, which was a nice looking wooden cabin where salamanders scooted in the rafters of the ceiling as soon as we opened the door. (Glad the cabin had screens since the place is surrounded by all kinds of fruit and flower trees, so the bugs and critters would have been in every crevice. There was one very long legged creepy spider hiding on the wardrobe rack in the bathroom of the cabin that I had to get rid of upon entering, but that was the only exotically creepy critter we came upon inside, luckily).

It was as if we had the entire grounds to ourselves, since only two or so quiet couples and a group of nice Germans were also there during our stay.

There's an outdoor "bar" area adjacent to the kitchen where you can order fresh juices or any kind of alcoholic beverage during the day and early evening, and the meals, cooked to order, were exquisite and fresh. One night, the main power went out but the staff was still able to cook on the outdoor grill without any hassle. I'm sure the winds here knock the power out often enough so the hotel staff is used to dealing with this.

We made sure to have a horseback ride through the plantation and onto the beach and experienced the most brilliant fuchsia sunset we'd ever seen. Small fruit bats swarmed around the dinner table at the "violet hour" of early evening, but they are gorgeous and don't bother humans. They are so quick, it's almost impossible to catch one in a photo, but we managed. Another highlight!

Swimming in the warm, calm lake was unlike any body of water we'd ever experienced. Seeing the farmers herd their cattle and horses along the shore during the day was a rare treat, as was seeing the howler monkeys crawling through the tallest tree tops in the middle of the afternoon.

This was a rare paradise and though it seems like it may have been "expensive" for the island, it was well worth it. Just remember to book the transport to pick you up from the ferry when you land since car rentals or cabs on the island seem like they might be tricky to come by.

We had a beautiful time here, recommend it highly. We'd go back for sure!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tulsa, Oklahoma
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2014

I was seeking a peaceful place to unplug for a few days, and this is it. The Finca is a remote location on a remote island, and getting there took some time, but it was worth it. The view right on the lake is perfect. The room was very nice, and dining outdoors overlooking the lake was perfect. Food was great, and the owners were very pleasant and helpful. I would definitely stay there again in the future. We stayed in the main building which was nice, but next time I think I'd try one of the individual cottages they just built which are right along the beach. Keep in mind that there is nothing nearby within walking distance such as restaurants or shops, but that's OK if you're wanting to get away from it all.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2014

My wife and I really enjoyed our honeymoon at the Finca San Juan de la isla. We really appreciated the tranquility of the place. I was not expecting a hotel of this quality. Only one minor problem: no wi-fi in the cabins.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portugal
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 29, 2014

I've recently stayed 1 night at Finca San Juan de la Isla.
The room was ok, with 2 comfortable beds and hot water in shower.
Also, breakfast was good and the steak they served at dinner was very good.
It is situated at the border of the lake.
Having said that, the Finca is completely isolated from everything else, there is a really rough, 2,5 km long way from the road to the Finca, which means that, unless you have a car or don't mind to pay about 35-40 USD (both ways) for a taxi, you'll find yourself totally isolated from the rest of the island.
Also, compared to other hotels in Ometepe, this Finca is clearly overpriced.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Finca San Juan de la Isla

Address: Empalme el Quino 200 mts norte. 2 km este., Altagracia, Isla de Ometepe 505, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > Isla de Ometepe > Altagracia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in Altagracia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Finca San Juan de la Isla 3*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
San Juan de la Isla offers a beautiful scenery situated on the island of Ometepe. In this shelter visitors can enjoy the serenity, comfort, outdoor activities and adventure sports that Ometepe has to offer.In this place guests can relax in an atmosphere of peace and tranquility of the old hacienda, which dates back to the late nineteenth century and is now converted into a comfortable lodge with an enchanting rural country life and the beauty of the Cocibolca coast. San Juan de la Isla offers a variety of rooms and lodging options, as can be seen below. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Finca San Juan De La Isla Hotel Altagracia
Finca San Juan De La Isla Isla De Ometepe, Nicaragua - Altagracia

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