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“Just another same review” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Secret Garden Manizales Hostel

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The Secret Garden Manizales Hostel
Km 3 Via a Llanitos, Vereda la Floresta, Villamaria, Caldas | 15 Minutes From the Terminal, Manizales, Colombia   |  
Hotel amenities
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“Just another same review”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 7, 2013 via mobile

It has been said before and I'm doing it again. It's a certain style of hostel. Remote, bizar views in an awesome adventurous style bamboo hostel. And then there's Daniel and Eliesha, they made it. Such kind people who take absolute care and attention for all their guests. Also highly recommend Eliesha's cooking!
Had a great time staying in the hostel!

  • Stayed September 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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38 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bristol, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
83 reviews 83 reviews
42 hotel reviews
Reviews in 61 cities Reviews in 61 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 1, 2013

The consistency of reviews makes it feel like we are repeating what has been said, but Eliesha and Daniel's accommodating and friendly nature, the location and the general feel of the place oblige us to share our thoughts.
It really is worth the journey out of Manizales to experience a few days of home-cooked food, interesting chat and the spectacular views that surround the guest rooms and Daniel and Eliesha's home, which is where you can enjoy your meals.
They are fountains of knowledge on the local area and further afield and on top of that they even send you emails outlining your chosen itinerary - be it going to the local hot springs, visiting another town or a coffee farm.
Very much like visiting friends as opposed to a business transaction.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 25, 2013

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!! I spent 3 days at the Secret Garden...and I wish I could have stayed longer! :D ...Beautiful views, healthy AND delicious food, location, Eli and Daniel`s unbeatable hospitality, perfect climate...The Secret Garden has it all!!! I am already looking forward to coming back to the Secret Garden... and next time it will be to stay longer :D

  • Stayed September 2013, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bergen op Zoom
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2013

The Secret Garden is just what the other reviewers decribe: a little piece of paradise, hidden in a small branch off the gravel road from Villa Maria. It feels like it is in the middle of nowhere, but actually within a 10 minutes taxi ride you are in bustling Villa Maria. For the price of the rooms you can't expect much, but you get a lot!!! Especially if you book one of the private rooms. Daniel and Eliesha are just starting up this hostel, but they are very friendly and they try very hard to plan your days with them. Daniel just keeps on phoning, googling and mailing for you. He can point you to places that are still very much off the beaten track. We also had some nice dinners with Daniel and Eliesha talking about Colombia and ours and their lives. We have just a few small comments to make the Secret Garden perfect, but we realise that for this price you cannot really expect more:
- It would have been easier when they have a car (4x4?) of their own, as it gives more possibilities, for example they can organise tours on their own, or just bring guests to and from Villa Maria or the bus station. The chiva proved to be very unreliable in terms of time of arrival.
- The neighbourhood with all the farm houses feels very safe, the neighbours are kind, but just to be 101% sure, it would have felt just a little bit safer during the night when we could have locked our room/the guesthouse. Now you are dependent on the awakeness of Fox the neighbour's dog that is very friendly to guests of the Secet Garden.

That said, all in all the Secret Garden for us was one of the highlights of our trip, also because the Manizales area offers such variation in activities and such a beauty in landscape and kindness of people.

  • Stayed July 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
    • 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.
Brooklyn
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2013

This is exactly may favorite kind of place to stay when I travel! It's tucked out of the way, amidst stunning scenery, and run with great love and care (con carino!) by a wonderful couple, Daniel and Eliesha. As others have already said, Eliesha cooks absolutely incredible meals - her oatmeal pancakes with bananas and peanut butter are a must have - and we had great conversations with them at dinner, it was like staying with two wonderful and very interesting friends. The hostal is set overlooking just a breathtaking valley and other mountains. Sunsets are spectacular!

Secret Garden is a superb base for exploring all the natural beauty around Manizales, and it is nice to be tucked away in gorgeous nature instead of staying in the big city. From Secret Garden, it is a long (~30 min) but beautiful walk up to the edge of town, where you can catch very frequent buses or taxis, including a bus that runs every 5 minutes and goes directly to the various volcanic/thermal spring baths, to the cable car that goes up to a mirador overlooking Manizales, or to a connecting bus to a coffee finca. (Or to the all important tejo bar!). Or for going to the airport or going on a major day hike in Parque Nevados you can have a taxi to come pick you up at the hostal no problem.

The cafetera region is a stunning destination and this was a beautiful way to enjoy all the birds and natural beauty - to wake up, go to sleep and even shower overlooking it all. Highly recommended!

  • Stayed September 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 12, 2013

We had a wonderful two nights in Secret Garden, highly recommend it!
Just outside of Manizales, Elisha and Daniel have created the perfect place for travel weary people to unwind, enjoy stunning scenery and eat delicious and wholesome food. Both the rooms and the food are great value - Elisha cooks both breakfast and dinner which are wonderful!
We also visited Hacienda Guayabal whilst we were there thanks to Elisha and Daniels help which was fantastic and well worth the trip.

Room Tip: Definitely ask for the suite - only 10,000 pesos more than a regular room and has a private bathroom...
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 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.
Lima, Peru
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2013

The Secret Garden is the perfect getaway, in an almost secret corner of Villa Maria which is just next to Manizales. It's the perfect place to relax, enjoy nature and very nice homemade meals, it's definitely not the next standard hostel.

Elisha and Daniel are very warm, friendly and so generous! We did a very nice walk through one of the neighbor's gardens with them and had great conversations, especially during the dinners. Expect the best private service thinkable in perfect setting.

Room Tip: The suite is definitely worth the extra 10000COP - the room and bathroom and both beautiful, don'...
See more room tips
  • Stayed July 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
    • 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 The Secret Garden Manizales Hostel

Address: Km 3 Via a Llanitos, Vereda la Floresta, Villamaria, Caldas | 15 Minutes From the Terminal, Manizales, Colombia
Location: Colombia > Caldas Department > Manizales
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 21 Specialty lodging in Manizales
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hostel & Bistro in the Colombian Coffee Region, outside of Manizales. Enjoy backpacker premium class service and a gluten-free menu - while making new friends. We also offer guided treks, coffee tours and other day trips, exclusively for our guests. Please be sure to contact us or make a reservation before arriving as we only have 3 rooms and may be full. Thank you! ... more   less 
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