Aida, the lovely lady who runs the hostel treated us like family from the time we arrived. She made me fresh chamomile tea when I was ill, cooks delicious pancakes with home made jam for breakfast and, if you ask her, loves to tell the fascinating story of how the hostel began (with the hippies, Bob Dylan and some of Pink Floyd kicking things off in the 70s). Aida speaks perfect English and if you're finding it difficult to get in contact, there is no need to book ahead unless you are a large group. There's space for about 70 people in a variety of clean, comfortable and nicely decorated rooms, so she'll always let you stay. The property is so large and nicely laid out that it's possible for families and young travellers to stay simultaneously without getting in each others way.
The surrounding mountains and volcanoes are breath-taking, the local people are friendly and Casa Aida is the perfect base to explore from. Jose, our new friend and Aida's adult grandson, is also a guide for the surrounding area and seems to have the best rates around.
I can't praise this place enough and can't wait to return some day!