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“Safe hotel, central location, helpful owner & great breakfast” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Villa Isabella

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Hotel Villa Isabella
Diagonal Norte Iglesias Catolica San Juan del Sur Rivas, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua   |  
Hotel amenities
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Safe hotel, central location, helpful owner & great breakfast”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2011 via mobile

This hotel is located on the corner of a block that overlooks the main church in town. Only a couple of blocks from main bars, restaurants, shops etc and about 4 blocks from the beach.

American owner was really helpful and made every effort to make sure we were happy. Breakfast was included and a good standard. Free tea and coffee 24/7 a nice touch.

Only drawback is that the pool wasn't the most inviting. But if you're in SJDS you're probably there for the beaches so it's no big deal!

Always had security and has a locking gate at the front.

  • Stayed December 2011
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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151 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    101
    34
    9
    3
    4
See reviews for
35
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Lugano, Switzerland
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 25, 2011

I have visited this hotel four times, since 2001. The last visit was in November 2011 and I will be coming back for sure. The hotel is located in a quiet neighbourhood, has big clean rooms with good bathrooms and the staff and American owner are very friendly and helpful. I like it especially because it is an excellent deal. Pricewise it is in the 'middle class section' - around some USD 50 for a single room but with all the comfort you need for a relaxed stay. The beach and its restaurants are only 5 minutes walk away and you can walk around at any time of the day or during the night, it is a really safe area with lots of small businesses, b&b, shops, etc.. Only one thing I would welcome: A better choice on the breakfast. The typical Nicaraguan breakfast is quite poor. But overall a super deal and in my personal opinion the best deal to stay overnight in San Juan del Sur.

Room Tip: all rooms are in the upper floors and quiet - have tried different ones, all are really o.k.
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled on business
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
New York
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2011

We will be back at the Villa Isabella for the fourth time in January. We love it here. Amazing breakfasts (thanks Mike) just lovely times lazing on the front porch in a hammock, great rooms (we stay in condo 1A). And the place is run by two humanitarians. Ask Jane, one of the owners, to tell you about all the incredible work she does with the local kids at the town library (which she founded)

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled on business
    • 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2011

There are literally scores of places to stay in this great beach town, ranging from bare minimum hostels to a top notch resort. I've stayed in many of them over the years. Villa Isabella is definitely in the top 5% with regard to amenities, but it beats them all for value. It offers hotel rooms and 1 or 2 bedroom condos, all with cable TV, air conditioning and hot water (with water pressure even!) Complementary coffee, tea, and purified water are on hand in the lobby. Breakfast is included, and we are talking about a made to order selection that includes pancakes, waffles, fruit plates, eggs, and more, you take your pick each morning. Possible the best thing about this hotel is the courtyard swimming pool. It's not large, it's not fancy, but it offers a shady respite from the blazing afternoon temperatures where you can lounge on wicker rocking chairs and check your email over their Wifi. Last but not least, Villa Isabella is one of the few hotels in town with a generator. During the frequent power outages that this part of the country experiences, Isabella's backup power keeps all the utilities up and running. If you like your creature comforts, this is the place for you.

Room Tip: The condos have fully stocked kitchens and big living rooms for larger groups or longer stays.
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, GA
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 8, 2011

My husband, son and I spent 3 nights at Hotel Villa Isabella in July and we were very satisfied with the accommodations. The first room that Mike (the owner) showed us was not quite spacious enough for the three of us so he moved us into another, bigger room without any problem at all. The complimentary breakfast each morning is hearty and a good start to the day. The hotel is also in a great location, handy to the beach and for walking around town. I thought the price was very reasonable for the room and we had access to all the water we could drink and all the movies we wanted to watch. Thank-you, Mike....we would love to return some day!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
La Canada Flintridge, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2011

A return visit to Villa Isabella finds improvements including a new kitchen, larger lobby area, and a Vonage phone for calls to the US and Canada. Earlier improvements added a pool, dining area, and wifi.
The staff continues to be friendly and attentive. Breakfast continues to be delicious. Although mostly Spanish-speaking, the staff is accustomed to English-speaking guests and is quite forgiving of Spanish poorly spoken. Co-owner Mike, a native English speaker from California, is usually there and enjoys sharing his extensive knowledge of Nicaragua.
Right in town, an easy walking distance to the beach, the hotel has an at-the-beach theme throughout. Everything is clean, the rooms are air conditioned and comfortable, and the showers have “real” hot water (not to be taken for granted in Central America). This is US-style accommodations; a definite cut above the backpacker hostels typically found in the area.
Our room had a view of the pool area. If you want an outside view, be sure to specify this when making your reservation.
Co-owner Jane continues to be a driving force behind lending libraries in the country, making Villa Isabella the center of operations for this and related NGO (Non-Governmental Organization) activities.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
Oxford, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 25, 2011

With a young family, you are always looking for child friendly accomodation and we found it in Villa Isabella. Kids always insist on staying there and on chocolate pancakes for breakfast...

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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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Additional Information about Hotel Villa Isabella

Address: Diagonal Norte Iglesias Catolica San Juan del Sur Rivas, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #23 of 53 Specialty Lodging in San Juan del Sur
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Villa Isabella, an intimate hotel, is dedicated to your full enjoyment of San Juan del Sur and the surrounding Pacific Coast paradise. Our attention to detail and personal service frees you to focus on your stay, either for business or pleasure. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Villa Isabella Nicaragua/San Juan Del Sur

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