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“So Fun!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Surf Ranch Hotel & Resort

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Surf Ranch Hotel & Resort
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Empalme de El Valle, 991.5 m al Este | Follow the Surf Ranch Signs, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua (Formerly Surf Ranch Action Sports Resort)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #15 of 21 Hotels in San Juan del Sur
Jackson, Wyoming
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“So Fun!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2013

I had a great time! Everyone that works at the ranch is incredibly nice, willing to answer any questions and help you out in every way. Had an incredible time horseback riding, surfing and deep sea fishing as well as just hanging out at the ranch in the pool. The shuttles to/from town and other activities made it wonderfully convenient to get around. The guys behind the bar- helped correct our Spanish and made us laugh. We saw a two toed sloth in the trees as well as howler monkeys. The surfing lessons were great - I stood up my very first time and enjoyed the rest of the day in the water. Fishing with Sergio was super fun; we didn't catch fish so he speared a few for our dinner and took us to his restaurant. It was a wonderful trip! These guys are doing a great job and offering an active, fun option off the beaten path. I'm looking forward to coming back. Thank you again for everything!

  • Stayed May 2013, 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.
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180 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    88
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
cincinnati
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 14, 2013

My brother, friend and I travelled to Nicaragua and had the time of our lives. The surf ranch is a great way to experience this country because they will arrange shuttles, guides etc...

By far the best part of the trip was meeting other travelers staying at the ranch. I truly believe I/we have met lifelong friends and will travel with these folks in years to come.

If you're traveling to Nicaragua you have to be in the right state of mind. Don't expect 5 star accommodations. Expect great people, amazing experiences, perfect surf and just go with the flow.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 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
    • 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.
Breckenridge, Colorado
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 10, 2013

This is for anyone who bought the all inclusive package. It's awful. If you want water you pay for it. If you want juice with breakfast, you pay for it. You get rice with every single meal regardless. The all inclusive food is like prison food although I've never been to prison. Actually, prisoners might have it better. The portions are tiny so you will probably have to spend more money and buy another meal they offer which are actually good. You only get one activity a day, anything after that will cost you. Pick wisely since you only get the one. The only good thing about the resort are the bartenders. That was a smart move to hire those guys, they are great. The rooms have a bed and a fan, that's it. You will need the fan cause it's insanely hot and no A/C anywhere on the resort so there is no relief since the resort is so far inland. You better hope they don't lose power because it gets awful trying to sleep in those places. My advice is to save your money and get a hostel in town. I stayed at a few and they are awesome, cheap, and clean. You also have to schedule shuttles to get into town which you wouldn't have to worry about if you saved money and stayed in town. It has a better vibe in town as well and the food is TONS better and cheaper. Once you're there you have to pay their prices at the resort because it's to much of a hassle to get into town. I wouldn't very choose to stay there again.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lukeboychuk, Owner at Surf Ranch Hotel & Resort, responded to this review, May 14, 2013
Josh

First I would like to thank you for coming to stay with us.

Second, I would like to clear things up for everyone.

First off, in person, you told us you had an awesome time. A few days in, you broke one of our surfboards in half. The cost to replace it is $400, and we only charged you $300. Upon check in, our receptionists went over the cost for all surfboard damages and you even signed it. After breaking the board and hearing of the charge, you cooperated and paid it. It was not until you got home, that you sent me an email, wanting us to reimburse you all of the money, and the email did have a hint of blackmail if we did not reimburse you. Blackmail is something we do not agree to.

You told me about this Trip Advisor response in advance, but to my surprise, you did not mention why you really wrote it (breaking the surf board and not getting your money back). I understand that you wrote most of it out of anger, so I would just like to clear everything up so everyone will have the correct info before they come.

1. Paying for water and other beverages (juices,cocktails,imported beers, etc) - Yes, the all inclusive package, you need to pay for bottled water. ( You only receive unlimited local beers and rum and coke). When purchasing the package, it clearly states it, as well as the receptionist tells you again when you check in. You also then sign the sheet saying you agree and understand.

2. We have had no complaints about the all inclusive food. We also have a full menu that you can also order off of. The food has been rated as one of the best places to eat in town.

3. All inclusive activities - Most packages do not even get an activity included. In your case, you bought the package that you get paintball and yoga included, which you can do both in one day.

4. Hot rooms - The villas have more windows and fans, allowing for better airflow. The condos not on the ends do have a lack of air flow, but with the bathroom window open, ground and ceiling fans on, it is perfect. We are adding screen doors to all units, and some will have A/C if people would like to upgrade.

5. Save money and get a hostel in town? I just want to remind you, that the package you purchased was $499, all inclusive for 2, for 5 nights. That is $50 each per day and night, of all you can drink beer and rum, activities, and 3 meals a day. If you can find a hostel or any other place in town, that can do this, then by all means.

6. Shuttles - Our shuttles go back and forth all day. Yes for large groups like yours (15 +) people, we did have to do some organizing, but our staff did an excellent job and your whole group loved every minute of their stay.

Thank you.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Biloxi
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2013

The property is brand new and quaint. The pool and swim up bar really kept me in the sun more than I planned!!!!! The staff spoke English and were very attentive and took very good care of us. Then when you get hungry, don't leave just order up at the bar and start to enjoy.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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.
San Francisco, California
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

My choices were to stay in a dirty hostel in town or for not too much more stay at this great resort with all of my favorite activities. It wasnt too hard of a choice but I definitely made the right one.

And when I say resort, dont think of a posh place with only rich people in white shirts and loafers, this is the place for young adults (or old children) to stay and have fun but at the same time be in a nice clean baller feeling place.

Room Tip: I was solo so I stayed in a condo, which is fine for couples or friends as well. If you are spendin...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled solo
    • 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.
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2013

Had a great time! The staff was amazing and very accommodating and went way above and beyond for me. Travis and Lucas were open to all ideas about how to make the ranch even more spectacular. I loved the little dirt road to the resort- I felt like the lights were my own little oasis.. The resort is the perfect size bc by the end of the week we knew all of the other guests names and had plenty of people to go to town, to go to the beach, or just hang by the bar with. Felt like we had a resort family!
The resort was super safe- I slept every night w/ my door open and never locked during the day. We did not do all-inclusive and felt that food and drinks were very reasonable and even waited to eat a couple of times to eat those delicious chicken wings. Planning on going back super soon and visiting Buddy (the best dog in Nica)...

  • Stayed April 2013
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Leandro, California
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 28, 2013

We had an EXCELLENT time at Surf Ranch. Everybody was VERY friendly and fun. This is NOT a luxury experience. Keep in mind you are in a third world country. There is no air conditioning and low voltage electricity but that is standard for San Juan. The ceiling fans kept it fairly cool at night. Our unit had a window but my friends room did not. We did sleep with the door open. We felt safe enough to leave our doors open with the security guard and Buddy the Pit Bull on patrol. Buddy is all business at night and a cuddle bug during the day. There are rosters everywhere so be prepared for hearing Cock-a-Doodle Doo all night. A travel fan would have been good both for white noise an ventilation. The rooms are very basic but we did not spend much time in there. There are SO many great activities to participate in. The surfboard rental, shuttle to the beach and 1 surf lesson were included in our package. We also went repeling with Aracne Rapel tours and zip lining at Flying Frog Canopy tours. Both were extra but WELL worth it! Meals, beer and Rum were also included in our package. Bottled water and other drinks are extra. The food was really good but pretty much the same every meal. Be prepared to wait awhile for food, coffee and shuttles. I was traveling with a laid back group of friends and we didn't mind waiting for shuttles or food so it was totally fine, but I know some of my friends would not have enjoyed it as much because they are impatient. Just get into the laid back, chill mind set before you go and you will not be dissapointed. Travis and Lucas have made great strives in improving the whole experience and are eager and willing to accomadate their guests.

Room Tip: Ask for an end room with a window but be prepared for hearing Cock -a -Doodling all night long. Whit...
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Surf Ranch Hotel & Resort

Address: Empalme de El Valle, 991.5 m al Este | Follow the Surf Ranch Signs, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua (Formerly Surf Ranch Action Sports Resort)
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #15 of 21 Hotels in San Juan del Sur
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Surf Ranch Hotel & Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Surf Ranch is Nicaragua`s first and only action sports resort, featuring Nicaragua`s largest skateboard park, jungle paintball course, tower drop into a huge inflatable airbag, world class restaurant & bar, swimming pool & swim up bar, poolside cabanas, villas and penthouse condos. The Surf Ranch offers many extreme sports and activities such as surfing, skateboarding, catamaran sailing, fishing, yoga, scuba diving, paintball, rockclimbing and more. Whether you are looking for an adventure or to just simply get away and relax, the Surf Ranch has it all. We are located in the tropical surfing town of San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua, 2 hours south west from the main capital, Managua. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Surf Ranch Hotel & Resort Nicaragua/San Juan Del Sur

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