we travelled with two young children, during the Galapagos busy season, so we were happy to find availability online for a sea view room about two months ahead of our stay. Less than two hours after booking that, we got an e-mail from Mr. Benitez, the hotel manager telling us that there has been a problem with the booking system and all the regular rooms were already booked for the dates we had requested. Not a good start, but Mr. Benitez offered us to stay at the "owners' suite" - a term which initially made us suspicious but which (after we asked for and received some photos and detailed location information) turned out to to be a wonderful large two bedroom apartment less than 5 minutes away from the main lobby of the hotel.
Everything about our stay was perfect, but it was the quality of the service by the entire hotel staff that really stood out. When our son got high fever in the middle of our third night, someone from the hotel went to town (quite a hike, including a jetty ride) got us some children's Ibuprofen, and hand delivered it to our suite. Free of charge. The kitchen staff made a yummy birthday cake for our twins for breakfast on our last day (which was the kids' birthday). Everyone else was unfailingly nice and friendly.
The one suggestion I would make is for the hotel staff to more clearly advertise to guests the importance of booking daily actvities - especially day trips to other islands - well in advance. Mr. Benitez offered us (in January, when we made the boking) a range of day trips, including several that we knew at the time we were interested in. But we thought we could just wait and book them when we got there in March. That was bad research: because of the rules of the National Park, the number of boats sailing from Santa Cruz to some of the nicest minor islands is limited and the day trips fill up! When we arrived at Finch Bay, everything (not just the tour company that the hotel works with, but everything) was booked. The staf at the hotel tried very hard to find us a spot on any boat, but to no avail. In the end, we got incredibly lucky because we went to an agency in town and, after about two hours of trying various combinations of days and destinations, found some spots that had just opened up due to a cancellation. So we ended up going to Bartolome one day and to North Seymour on the next day - which is pretty much what we had hoped to see. But we wish we had heeded Mr. Benitez's advice and booked the activities together with our stay - it would have saved us a lot of hassle.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The award-winning hotel enjoys a peaceful and magical beachfront location in Puerto Ayora, on Santa Cruz Island. The 21 Garden View-room and 6 Ocean View suite hotel makes the ideal base for exploring the natural diversity and attractions of the island – including Tortuga Bay beach – and for taking day-trips to nearby islands, aboard its own, specialized yachts. The hotel also implements best practices in sustainable tourism. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Finch Bay Eco
- Finch Bay Eco Puerto Ayora
- Finch Bay Eco Hotel Galapagos Islands/Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz