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“A little slice of heaven” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa

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Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   De la Parroquia 1 1/2 cuadras al este, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua   |  
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Ranked #9 of 21 Hotels in San Juan del Sur
GreenLeadersSilver level
New York
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“A little slice of heaven”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2013

I stayed at this resort 3/25-3/31/13. The resort itself is beautiful.I stayed with my husband and 10yr old twins. We stayed in a two bedroom Casita.When I first arrived I was not far from the reception,However,the pool close to entrance is small and you must go through the restaurant.I asked to be moved to a Casita close to lap pool/ family pool( yes alot of steps) but you can always get a ride up and down by staff. After being moved I received a t/c from front desk informing me thatbon Fri/Sat,there would be a party from 5p.m-4am and the noise might be to much.I had already unpacked and just figured it would be ok.Come Thur they started to set up for this party that "Malboro" was sponsoring.They closed off the family pool which only left the lap pool open. The issue became there where not enough chairs.This went on until Sat.Honestly if they are going to have a party for two days they should inform guest when they book.The hotel did give me 4 arm bands for my family.I did tell them two of them were10yrs old but was told this would not be a problem.We went out to eat and decided to go for 30 min. When we went to go to party we were told " No kids" I explained that they had arm bands and we are paying guest at hotel but was told "sorry"you and your husband are welcomed but "No kids" We politely left ( who did she think was going to watch kids.???) anyhow it was run over with teenagers so it was better off.On a different note the town of San Juan is a funky town with great little restaurants.We ate 2x at Maurico's pizza/pasta.I am from New York and this pizza is as good as any pizza in NYC.We had burgers at Nacho Libre- owner from Calfornia, again burgers were outstanding.The most expensive( by Nicaragua standing was EL Cobria)Picture of Sanagria,3 sodas,2beers,2apps plus main course 80.00 US.
To sum up this is a great little town and Pelican Eyes is the top hotel in area,if you stay here go to town to eat,you will have a great time and people are very friendly.I would return despite the whole 2 days of party( which was ridiculously loud) but I was warned.

Room Tip: Try getting a room by the lap pool-views are amazing and bar tenders at this bar are wonderful.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pelican Eyes R, General Manager at Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa, responded to this review, February 21, 2014
Dear,

Thank you for having taken the time to write this review. I am sorry to hear that you encountered inconveniences of the Malboro party. I can only add that this is an exception, such events do not tend to happen often. Nevertheless I can deduct from the review that you did have a pleasant stay at our resort and I am glad to know that. We look forward being you and your family of service again in the future.

Best regards,

Gabriel Holt
General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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527 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (118)
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English first
Washington DC
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 26, 2013

I traveled to far away San Juan del Sur for a wedding with two friends. San Juan del Sur is a VERY small beach town filled with hostels and small, quite funky hotels along with a smattering of resort style condos (some occupied by the upscale and politically famous Chamorro family). Pelican Eyes provided a truly first class experience in this tiny surfer town. We shared a well-priced casita called Casa Sosiego (I think it means rela, ,and we did!) located between two lovely pools - one a large family pool and the other an infinity lap pool. We loved our casita (just accept you'll see small lizards and a few ants and exotic bugs - though there were few bugs after the first day - I suspect spraying) which had a large living area and kitchen. Two huge bedrooms, good beds and linens, nice bathrooms (fun shower), lots of shelf and closet space. Ceiling fans in every room moved the air when it got a touch warm during the afternoon. Air conditioning (that worked) was available if necessary. BEST FEATURE - terraces off each and every room with comfortable seating designed to follow the sun. Beautiful views. Good (not great) food - but clearly the best in town. Lovely people. Some communications difficulties but none with the great guys at the bar who delivered right to our room the night we watched the Academy Awards. Yes. TV, as well as Wi-Fi. Small quibbles with the day-trippers who thronged the pools on the weekends (I suspect the pools at Pelican Eyes are the best for miles around). And folks - this is NOT the US. It's the second poorest country in Central America. The services at Pelican Eye are very good considering what other tourists there are getting - and what the population lives with. And it's on a steep hill. With dirt roads all around. If you're patient and somewhat
nimble you can wait to be picked up for the trips up and down the steep hill or you can walk - as we did - down to breakfast - daily. I am 66 years old - with a bad knee - and I loved the exercise.

  • Stayed February 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
    • 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, New York, United States
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

The good:
1. Beautiful views
2. Nice pools
3. Fair priced food and drinks.
4. Close to the town of San Juan del Sur if that is a positive for you.
5. Villas are spacious.

The bad...and where to begin.
1. Hectic staff, where no one is in charge and need to be asked multiple times to do anything.
2. Bugs all over the rooms. Lots of them and a full variety.
3. Staff that panders for tips housekeeping left an envelope then they throw a 15% per day on your bill. WTF? Look its one way or another. I suspect someone in management (if they have such a thing because it often seems mismanaged)
4. Room was like a dungeon with almost no natural light.
5. Very limited food selection at the restaurants and then they were often out of 50% or more of the menu. AND the waiters never told you what they were out of, instead you had to order it and then they came back. Also room service is the same menu, but requires that you pay in cash, which honestly just seems bizarre.

Bottom line: New management needed. Don't go and certainly not at $200 a night, unless you are desperately looking to be within walking distance to San Juan del Sur in which case options are limited.

Room Tip: I would go for the "Studio" over a normal room as they are essentially the bigger half of...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 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.
Portland, Oregon
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2013

What a gorgeous hotel with stunning views toward the ocean. Our room was huge, with a balcony facing the west (wonderful for the sunsets) and a second patio a level lower. One level up from our cabina were two swimming pools and a full bar/restaurant with excellent food and drinks. Service was always friendly and helpful. Pelican Eyes is for the able-bodied: a long walk down to the village and back up, but it suited us fine to get some exercise because it was so easy to lounge at the pool with a pina colada, a good book, and just do nothing.

Room Tip: Rooms with a balcony facing the Pacific have a stunning view all day, all evening til sunset.
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  • Stayed March 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marblehead, Massachusetts
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2013

Breathtaking beauitiful place, lovely room, best shower anywhere, But....we had a room at the top of the property. A nearly impossible walk up or down from lobby/restaurant area. Staff very accomodating with a car, but the ride was over impossibly rutted, irregular dirt road and took 5-7 minutes. Once called from room and took over 20 minutes to get down to restaurant. Lap pool was unavailable for laps, as over-run with young people drinking and hanging around and in the pool. Restaurant area was quite beautiful, food good, but not outstanding for the prices. Service impeccable. During our last night there a reading light fixture imbedded in the ceiling over our beds fell out of the ceiling, releasing a metal clamp which awakened me when it hit me on the cheek at 2 AM! The light fell out about 10 inches, tethered on its wire. Not at all a pleasant night. The front desk said they were "sorry" period. Also, if you're not a surfer SJdS has little to offer, except that it is a relatively short distance to some attractive viewing, hiking areas. The only thing that compels me to give two stars instead of one is that the room and its views were really quite spectacular (even the reading lights were a nice touch until they started falling out.)

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
PelicanEyes, Guest Relations Manager at Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa, responded to this review, March 18, 2013
Dear Owen M.,
Thank you for your thoughtful review of Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa.

We are aware of the bumpy road connecting some of the units and we are working to improve this. We are glad that you were able to utilize the free shuttle service offered by the hotel in the meantime.

We do have a wonderful mix of guests both young and old. However, should you ever feel bothered by other guests, we do encourage you to speak to someone in management who would happily address the situation for you.

And we are sorry to hear that you weren't able to take advantage of the many wonderful activities in San Juan. The hotel offers assistance in planning sailing and fishing tours, horseback riding tours, rappelling, atv rentals, stand-up paddle board rentals, yoga classes, spa days, surf lessons, and more. We can also help to arrange for day trips to some of the surrounding areas offering both adventure and historical experiences.

Again, thank you for your helpful review of the resort. It is with this feedback that we can continue to improve upon our services.

All the best,
Pelican Eyes Management Team
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

My boyfriend and I stayed for 7 nights at the beginning of February 2013.

Reception arranged transfers for us from the airport in Managua, which worked brilliantly. We were delayed two hours and the drivers kindly waited for us.

Upon arrival we were upgraded from a 1 bedroom ocean view room to a casa in the upper stage 2 part of the development. Such a beautiful house! Two terraces (including one off the top floor bedroom) and a kitchen and lounge area.

The resort is very peaceful and beautifully landscaped with tiled stairways twisting through lush foliage up the (steep) hill side.

The hill setting is very beautiful and the views are breathtaking especially at sunset.

We opted to walk to and from our accommodation to the main restaurant/reception/San Juan but it's quite a hike - we enjoyed it but it wouldn't suit some. The hotel does offer a car service for a fee.

The staff are very friendly and helpful throughout the resort.

We did have a number of power cuts but were happy to open the doors/windows and let the fresh air blow through.

The restaurant food was a good mix of local inspired dishes and more Western food and of a high quality. We started each day sipping Nica coffee gazing out over the bay at La Cascada restaurant and typically ended the day in the same place!

The reception kindly arranged a tour through Edwin (awesome) at Macua Tours who took us to Granada and Masaya for the day.

We also liked San Juan very much. It's a sleepy little beach village. Just a touch rough around the edges but Gato Negro cafe is especially charming and El Timon does fantastic sea food. The locals are very friendly.

All together an unforgettable holiday.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Highlands Ranch, Colorado
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2013

I would definitely stay there again. The accommodations are quite nice and roomy since they are homes. The views at the bar/pool and up at the infinity pool are absolutely breaktaking. The food , especially the salads were excellent. The restaurant staff worked quite diligently to make sure all the patrons were content. There is no question the front desk staff was well trained and believed in top customer service. The manager was also quite nice. The only consideration I thought would be helpful was to move the trash house from the bottom of the stairs where you walk up to your rooms. It was smelly and took away from the beauty of the property.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa

Address: De la Parroquia 1 1/2 cuadras al este, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua
Phone Number:
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Green Hotel in San Juan del Sur
#6 Romantic Hotel in San Juan del Sur
#7 On the Beach Hotel in San Juan del Sur
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Pelican Eyes Resort and Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 65
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa offers a stunning hillside location and panoramic views of San Juan del Sur and the ocean beyond. Our infinity pools, spacious accommodations, romantically lush gardens, wonderful restaurants, open air bars, and one-of-a-kind San Juan Del Sur coastline sailing adventure are a unique experience.A visit to our Tranquila Day Spa is an experience of sheer indulgence. We offer a menu of massage and body treatments to ensure that you truly relax on your romantic Nicaraguan getaway. Experience more of Nicaragua with day trips to Granada or the artisan markets in Masaya. Here at the resort, open air yoga classes, water aerobics, and active local excursions (arranged by our concierge) help keep you fit while visiting paradise. Even our brick stairs—winding up the hillside — contribute to the cause!Our San Juan del Sur hotel’s mission is to provide a unique and memorable Nicaragua vacation experience in every aspect of your stay. Our friendly staff endeavors to fulfill every possible need or special request (and to predict those wishes perhaps not yet even realized!)No request is too big or too small. Let us know what we can do to enhance your stay in paradise. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pelican Eyes Hotel San Juan Del Sur
Hotel Pelican Eyes
Resort Pelican Eyes
Pelican Eyes Resort And Spa Nicaragua/San Juan Del Sur

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