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“great place for the price!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Residencial Espana

Residencial Espana
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Residencial Espana
Ecuador   |  
Hotel amenities
Spokane, Washington
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“great place for the price!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2010

The hostel is within a block of the main street of the bay. It has a private bathroom and comfortable beds. It is a very charming hostel with a nice patio area. Also offers wifi. Esther, the owner, is a doll and she has a helpful staff. I would highly recommend this place.

  • Stayed January 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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11 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2010

We were booked into this hotel from a travel agency in Quito and were pleasantly surprised. This was the one high point of that travel agency bookings. The hotel is small (20 ish rooms) but has only one main entrance, which makes it more secure. It is near downtown Puerto Ayora on the island of Santa Cruz, near discos, Darwin Center and places to eat and get provisions (like pharmacies, grocery stores and other shops). The hotel has their own contacts for taxis and tours, they are very strict on customer service with anyone that they use and very selective about their vendors.

Esther (one of the managers) is a relative of the woman who owns the hotel and is fluent in English, which is helpful if you do not speak much (or any) Spanish.

Amenities - Rooms are small by USA standards, but clean and neat. A/C is extra but well worth it. We had a matrimonial room (i.e. one double bed) with bathroom (shower, toilet, lavatory) and cable TV. The courtyard area is outside but tiled and shaded, with chairs and hammocks and a nice breeze. The kitchen/eating area was also covered but open air, which was pleasant in that climate. All the common areas were tiled and kept mopped clean.

The breakfast is cooked by the owner of the hotel with a small staff of helpers. She uses only purified water (not tap water) so the food, even cut up fruit, is safe to eat for travelers. We enjoyed breakfast each day in the dining area and were treated like family by the staff.

We took a tour to Isla Isabella that had been pre-booked with a tour agency in Quito and ended up on the same tour with people who paid half as much as we did and also with people who paid twice as much, which really made us mad. We plan to go back for a future trip and book through the hotel to get a better deal. We did a few local tours on Santa Cruz that were booked by the hotel and were pleased with the tour guide and the service.

The airport transfers had also been arranged by the hotel and were very well done. If you are not familiar with the Galapagos, the airport is on another island (Balta) and the airport transfers include (if well done) someone to pick you and your luggage up at the airport, accompany you on the bus to the ferry boat, guide you off the island (by small ferry) and then transport you to your hotel in Puerto Ayora (45 minute drive once on Santa Cruz island).

Tips: This was a surprise to me! The "ferry" to Isabella and other islands from Santa Cruz is not what we would call a ferry. Since there are a large number of visitors and the town is reasonable sized, I had envisioned a medium size boat that might hold cars also. The "ferry" consisted of a flotilla of small motor boats (each holding about 10-12 people) with dual outboard motors. The trip to Isabella is over 2 hours, so if you are uncertain about your ability to deal with seasickness in a small boat, obtain seasickness medicine from the pharmacy before you go (drug available locally is called Mareol, I think it is Dramamine). I don't usually get motion sick but after seeing the size of the boat, I used the medicine and was fine. You may need to check about diving and using medicine....not sure of any effects. WEAR YOUR SUNSCREEN (I got burned on an overcast day with only a short period without sunblock).

We had a great time and are looking forward to a return trip someday. We will definitely stay at this hotel!

  • Stayed January 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 24, 2009

OVerall it's a good hotel for the basic things it offers. It's a familly run business so you get a more personable service. I recommend it for people searching for a decent place in Galapagos. It's good for backpackers and budget travellers.

The room was cleaned and the thin towels were changed every day. Even though they are still renovating, the surroundings are kept pretty clean and I didn't really see any debris or felt unsafe. The staircase and our room did have a little musty smell in combination with the cleaning solution.

Hotel Espana is located near the central harbour where most restaurants are located, tour agencies, supermarket, banks and souvenir shops. It's also only 5 minutes walk from the kiosk of restaurants where you can grab cheap meals. It's about 30 minutes walk from the Charles Darwin Station and 30 minutes walk to the entrance of Turtle/Tortuga Bay. It's right beside Hotel Gardner. There's also a laundry mat close by in case you need one.

We ddi not booked any tours with them so we cannot comment regarding this service. We came from a boat cruise and wanted to spend some time on Puerta Aroya for 3 nights. The diving agency chosen was based on talking to different ones. There's supposed to be wi-fi in the hotel. Unfortunately, the hotel was experiencing some technical problems around the time we were there. Also because they are still renovating, it can be noisy during the day but if you talk to reception, they'll offer to stop so you can rest fully should you wish. We weren't feeling so well and Esther offered us mint teas which I thought was very nice. I was only asking for hot water to make earl grey tea which we have on hand.

Considiring it's Galapagos, $40 is a good price for a basic (matrimonial) room with A/C, hot water and TV. Breakfast is $3 extra which we never tried out.

We had room #`14 which was large, clean and bright. It had a queen bed and a twin bed. Hoever, the pillows are small.

  • Stayed December 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
New York City, New York
16 reviews 16 reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2008

The hotel itself is decent, clean and not a bad price. However we booked a snorkeling trip thru the front desk (Hester). She promised a safe trip in a big boat. We paid our money and got to the dock but were handed off to a local fisherman who only spoke spanish and had a small rickety boat with NO lifefjackets. We demanded lifejackets and eventually he borrowed some from another tour group. It was clear we got ripped off by the hotel. The fisherman was a nice guy but no concept of safety and took us to a dangerous shoal where he said it was safe to snorkel...none of us were crazy enough to get out of the boat...we had him take us back to the dock. Hester acted suprised. We had also booked an island ferry to Isabela thru Hester...she again promised a big boat (she even showed us a picture of a big power boat). We were again ripped off and handed off to some locals in an overcrowded 2 stroke small boat not designed for the open ocean. The smoke and noise was awful and it was a VERY rough 3 hr ride (all the other boats that left with us were at least 1 hr ahead of us when they arrived and their ride was smooth). Almost everyone was puking even me who lives on a sailboat! Even some of the locals were puking. We even started taking on water an one point. I know the ocean and these guys are crazy, my fault for even getting on the boat. i knew better. Anyways, bottom line, dont take a chance with Hotel Espana and dont trust Hester. Yes, she is hot, yes she is very personable and nice, but she will sell you a dangerous and unpleasant trip to maximize profit to the hotel. If you need a last minute trip go to Moon Rise travel.

  • Liked — Decent Room
  • Disliked — Dishonest Travel Services
  • Stayed June 2008, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2007

We were booked into this little hotel on Santa Cruz. It's very homey and very, very clean. Rather spartan room decoration. AC is an additional charge. Fans are provided. It is really only hot in the middle of the day, when everyone is out. There is a common area with an outdoor kitchen and small garden. It is set back from the road, so you have to look for the sign.

Overall, it was enjoyable stay. Great for backpackers.

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Additional Information about Residencial Espana

Address: Ecuador
Location: Ecuador > Galapagos Islands > Santa Cruz
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 28 Specialty lodging in Santa Cruz
Also Known As:
Residencial Espana Hotel Santa Cruz
Residencial Espana Galapagos Islands/Santa Cruz, Ecuador

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