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“Home away from home” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Villa Maria

Villa Maria
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Villa Maria
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Arteaga 410, Oaxaca 68000, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #52 of 110 Hotels in Oaxaca
Colorado
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“Home away from home”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2010

We stayed at Villa Maria for one month with our 3 and 5 year old kids. We discovered VM from the Moon guidebook. From our initial e-mail contact to our check-out, Maria was very professional and gracious. VM met all our family needs. We felt very welcome and safe. Loved being in an ordinary, working-class neighborhood rather than the more tourist-oriented areas near Macedonio Alcala -- which have very charming, lovely places, but just didn't fit our needs and preferences. VM staff were excellent. After taking a 10-day excursion to Puerto Escondido, our kids were so happy to be back at VM, which is a great sign of how homey the place is. We never had any problems and would definitely invite others intending to stay for an extended period to consider Villa Maria.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled with family
    • 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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19 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    14
    3
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Denver, Colorado
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2010

I stayed for extended periods at Villa Maria in July and December of 2009. I rented a nice three bedroom apartment in July; however, if you wanted to make use of the other two, a fifty dollar fee was charged for each one. It is a quiet complex even though there are two bars on each end of the street. At night, it is very dark and I was warned by Oaxacans that I shouldn’t walk alone. Of course, in the daytime, with the constant traffic, it is quite safe. Two friends came to visit me and Maria charged us fifty dollars per night. I learned of Villa Maria from some of her regular visitors and when I spoke to Maria by telephone, she stated that since I was friends of her regulars, I was most welcome and quoted a reasonable price for the rental of a small apartment. Before I commit myself to a three or four week rental, I like to see what I am getting into so I rented elsewhere until I could see Villa Maria. I rang her bell and a very rude woman came out in blue night gown and when I stated that I would like to see the patio, she almost slammed the door in my face. Nevertheless, when planning my next visit, I spoke to her and sent my deposit and upon arriving there, I found that the small apartment was much too small and rented the three bedroom one on the second floor. I mentioned that she had almost slammed the door in my face and she stated, “I must have thought you were Mexican.” I am Hispanic and teach at a university in the United States. She is accustomed to renting to a loyal group of people mostly from Canada and from the United States.
Nevertheless, I rented for a month and when some friends, colleagues from my university visited, she asked if they could pay $50 dollars per night and I stated that they could. So, while they arrived, she charged them $200.00 dollars to stay with me in my apartment! When I visited in December, I decided to stay in the small apartment and learned from other tenants that when their friends or relatives visited, she would charge them fifty dollars for an additional bedroom—not a bad deal. When I mentioned this to her, she denied having charged my friends for each day they stayed with me. I wrote to my friends and they sent her a letter attesting to the fact that Maria had indeed charged an additional $200 dollars for an apartment which had already cost me $600 dollars. She was extremely annoyed and reluctantly refunded the money even though she stated that she had no recollection of having imposed such a fee. Also, when I was leaving the apartment, she came in and stated that it was customary to leave each employee twenty dollars to motivate them. If she has four employees, that amounts to an extra $80 dollars. She should pay them a decent salary herself! When I brought this up on my second visit, she admitted that she shouldn’t have done this—it literally amounted to extortion. Also, on my second visit, she had raised the amount of rent from $380.00 to $480.00 for the small apartment and she stated that she had been charging that sum for years. Well, thanks to GMAIL, I showed her my initial correspondence in which she had quoted $380.00.
At night, she turns off all of the lights and if you come in late, the courtyard is quite dangerous. It is really just a walk through because there is no place to sit. An 80 year old woman who has lived there for over 20 years, stumbled on one of the uneven paths and broke her arm. That same woman has created a nice roof-top garden which she shares with others. Otherwise, there would be no amenities other than a clothes line and a sink in which to wash.
Villa Maria is clean and secure and if you are white and are willing to go along with Maria’s quirks, no problem; however, beware of extortion. She makes use of the Internet for her business and still charges each apartment twenty dollars for the use of it—something which should be included in the rent.
Privacy is almost non-existent because one must walk in front of each apartment to get in or out of your rooms. Nevertheless, it is a pleasant place and if you are careful when you walk through the property so that you don’t fall, you shouldn’t experience too many difficulties. I don’t think that Maria realizes that the demographics of the United States are changing and that she will have to adapt to many more Hispanic and Black tourists who visit Oaxaca. I can still recommend Villa Maria, but with many reservations.

Stayed December 2009, traveled solo
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin Texas
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2009

My mother, brother,sister in low , my friend and I, went to visit Oaxaca in May 2009.
My friend and I live in the USA. And all my relatives in Monterrey N.L. Mexico. We were five people. I found Villa Maria apartments in the web and read the trip advicer revews.
It was the revews what make me decide to stay at Villa Maria's apartments. And thanks to the fact that we stayed there, our trip was incredible fun and we save a lot. We were six blocks away from the zocalo, 2 blocks away from internet access and bakery, 20 steps from a comnvinient store, 1/2 hour from Monte Alban (incredible arqueological site).
The apartament building is super clean, our apartment was in the first floor, 3 nice bedrooms and one bath, there was always hot water, the beds were very confortable, we had a nice kitchen which we use for breakfast mainly (big savings) the personal are sweet and super secure, the terrace has a very sweet view of the city. The place is very quiet and the best is Maria who will help you with any info you may need.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with family
    • 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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Chicago
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2009

Villa Maria is a quaint apartment complex that offers a wonderful space that opens to a beautiful garden patio. My family spent a few days with Maria, the owner and caretaker, and truly enjoyed ourselves. The property is located close enough to safely walk to the city center or zocalo, while still being quiet enough to peacefully sleep through the night. While parking is not included, there is a close safe public parking lot around the corner that is very accessible and reasonably priced (based on duration of stay).

Within the apartment, everything is included like stove, refrig, linens and towels...and for those staying an extended period of time, sufficient storage for cloths and luggage.

I highly recommend this property to those individuals looking for a restful, quiet location that is very friendly. Maria offers short and long-term stay options for travelers.

  • Liked — Quiet, Clean and Spaceous
  • Disliked — N/A
  • Stayed December 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Seattle
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 22, 2006

Villa Maria is all this site says it is -- a delightful and very affordable place to rent an apartment with kitchen, living room, bathroom and two bedrooms. It´s been an excellent choice for myself and my two friends for a two-week stay. The staff is very friendly and helpful without being intrusive, and the apartment is simple and comfortable. The courtyard is nice, but I notice that it´s set up as a place to pass through rather than a place to hang out. There are chairs and a table on the roof garden, but the area right outside our door isn´t really set up for lounging in the shade with a good book.

On the plus side, this is the only hotel in Mexico in which I´ve ever been able to sleep without earplugs (except on our first night, when a parade complete with marching band and firecrackers spent about an hour wending its way through our neighborhood between 2 and 3 AM.)

On the down side, the neighborhood itself is the most hectic one I´ve ever been in. The traffic and accompanying fumes are intense, the sidewalks narrow and broken (some are gone altogether) and walking even a few blocks can be a bit grueling. Last night, after a week´s stay, I finally wandered into the area north of the zócalo, and was amazed to find a whole new world. Wider streets, many with little or no vehicular traffic, and overall a much, much calmer and more peaceful feel. I´m not just talking about the directly-north-of-the-zócalo tourist zone, but also the older neighborhoods quite a few blocks further north and east, including the area around Casa Arnel.

If Villa Maria were in the north end, I´d give it top marks and be certain I´d return. As it is, I hope to find an affordable apartment with kitchen in a location that´s a bit more conducive to a restful vacation once I exit the front door.

  • Liked — The roof garden -- and the price
  • Disliked — The surrounding neighborhood´s traffic
  • Stayed December 2006, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Keremeos, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2006

A hidden gem in Oaxaca City. Senora Maria is a gracious and thoughtful hostess. She is a walking tourist information agent. Just ask her, she will tell you of things that are not in the travel brochures, where, when, how to etc. We had our 20th anniversary there, and somewhere in our previous communication with Maria nwe mentioned this. On the 20 March, Francisco came walking through the court yard with a lovely boquet of flowers from Maria.

We only booked 1 week at Villa Maria, and found that a lot of the guests are 1 to 4 month visitors. One couple, from New Brunswick, come for 4 months and have done for over 15 years. We are going to make plans for 2007, and hope to be able to go for 1 month to Mexico, and hope to be able to stay at Villa Maria.

The rooftop gardens are a quiet and restful place to read, or just relax. The courtyard has a huge grapefruit tree and bushes, and the highlight of all was to be able to look right into a hummingbird nest and watch the progress from egg, to leaving the nest.

Nearby merchants, for groceries, laundry etc, are all very accomodating, and help you with the Spanish version of what you are looking for. The Zocola, finer restaurants, the markets, museum, womans cooperative market, are all within a 10 minute walk. Nearby banks will take your debit card for withdrawing pesos at a good rate.
We intend to travel to the nearby historic villages and ruins, and I want to spend a few days taking some of the famous Mexico cooking classes that are nearby. At the market, dont forget to buy the blocks of "real" oaxaca chocolate to take home.

Our over all rating of Villa Maria and of Oaxaca City is outstanding. We recomend you contact Maria and find out for yourself.

Stayed March 2006
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
UK
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
165 helpful votes 165 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 9, 2005

Not much to add to the other reviews which have said it all, but wanted to confirm that Villa Maria is everthing that others have said.

Fantastic rooms with everything you could need, secure location in quiet area but only 10-15 mins walk to the centre.

We were ill in our first week there and Maria was like a concerned mother hen, checking on us daily and making sure we didn´t need anything, not to mention helping us to get the right medication from the Pharmacist.

The villa staff are also a credit to Maria, warm and friendly and ready to do anything to make sure you enjoy your stay...special mention to Francisco, who is just the nicest man you could meet.

NB. The shop on the right hand corner of the block is good for basics and the owners greet you like long lost friends after about a day...it really makes you feel like a local!
Also the Internet place on the first street on your right is excellent value, with friendly staff.

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Villa Maria

Address: Arteaga 410, Oaxaca 68000, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Southern Mexico > Oaxaca > Oaxaca
Hotel Style:
#6 Best Value Hotel in Oaxaca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 14
Also Known As:
Villa Maria Hotel Oaxaca
Maria Hotel Oaxaca

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