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All reviewsminute walkcommon areasrooms are smallrooftop terracebeautiful courtyardreception arealate at nightcageslaundrykilobarriowashingoasis
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Reviewed February 12, 2008

We'd been going to Casa Arnel for years, but hadn't been for over 12 years. {Disclosure: we consider the Cruz family friends of ours.} We were pleased to see all the renovations.

We enjoyed our stay, and the renowned warmth of the family was not lacking. We also had some plumbing problems: stuffed up toilet, and care must be taken when t"aking your ease". (Enough said.)

The bed, although firm, was not "rock-hard" as we recalled from a visit in the mid-90s.
The shower worked fine, and hot water was more than sufficient for bathing. We saw no cockroaches, but we would take one or two in our stride, fas is a tropic area.

Breakfasts were very good (separate charge) especially the Granola Completas, of fresh fruit, granola and yogurt. The Huevos a la Oaxaqueño are a spicy treat.

The rates do not include bottled water, but it's available at the kitchen for a fair price.

Two Internet connected computers are in the reception area, available 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. for 10 pesos an hour.

One of the peculiar distinctions of the garden patio are the biblioteca of books to borrow or exchange; and the PLOP! of zapotes negros falling and splatting on the walkways.

As to the safety of walking in the area (Colonia Jalatlaco), it seemes safer than average to me; safer than the Zócalo or Mercado Benito Júarez area.

The Parque Júarez, (El Llano) is about 4 blocks away, accessible on reasonably lit streets, and El Llano itself is a daily and nightly place for families to come to walk, jog, and nibble some food treats. It feels utterly safe to me.

The new First Class Bus Station is now only about 4 or 5 blocks away. With one pack each and a smaller bag, we reached it in 5 -6 minutes from Casa Arnel.

To sum up, Casa Arnel is not for everyone. If you need pampering comforts, try elsewhere. If you like interacting with the hospitable family, and other travelers, then it's likely your kind of place.

  • Stayed: February 2008, traveled as a couple
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9  Thank Don C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 19, 2008

We had high hopes for this hotel. After using our usual method (choosing the hotels that appear in both mainstream guides, such as Frommer's, and discount ones, such as Let's Go) and having amazing success in Mexico City, we tried the same thing in Oaxaca. Gee, were we wrong. Although the courtyard of this hotel IS beautiful. It is not on the main drag. It is a rather long walk through an unlit area to get to the main square of town--it feels rather unsafe to walk out there. The toilet overflowed several times, and the beds were extremely uncomfortable. Although we had sprung for a room with private toilet (though not shower), we ended up using the hall toilet anyway given the problems with the toilet, which the staff seemed unconcerned about. I would recommend staying in the actual town of Oaxaca rather than out there. They also claimed it was a close walk to the bus station, but we regretted the decision to walk with luggage, as it wasn't really that close to the station either.

  • Stayed: March 2006, traveled as a couple
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7  Thank ascoltate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 25, 2007

This is a small family run hotel. All rooms face the courtyard which seems tropical with water fountain, giant lime and pomelo trees, parrots and other birds chirping away.
2 of the people at the front desk spoke English which was very helpful. The staff were wonderfully polite.
The room ran us $45 USD per night which really fit our budget.
We loved the location in that it was a 5 minute walk from a park and about 15 minute to the central Zocolo. It was nice to feel like we were getting away from all the busyness of the days activities.
The downside: Well, one night while getting up to use the bathroom we encountered a couple of cockroaches. It appeared they were coming up thru the shower drain. From then on each night we covered the drain with plastic and a heavy vase!
Also, the bed was hard. I mean cement hard. But I have to tell you it wasn't just this hotel. Our bed in Mx City was also rock hard. Talked to other travellers at other hotels, same story.
It's not a luxury hotel but it's not bottom of the line either.

1  Thank Drake_Cameron
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 12, 2006

I am in the apartment a half block away from casa arnel but I go there all the time. Everything they say about the caring family is true--they are great (the grandmother even sleeps in the room behind the kitchen with her parrot). Expect to be part of the family when you have questions or attend the family posadas (I go every year for them).

I love the walk to the centro--two blocks to the LLano park (where there is a big fiesta right now with bumper cars merry go rounds and lots of people in front of the church. There is usually a book fair in a week or so and a big christmas festival. ) Then two blocks to the tourist corridor--(I walk past the Santo Domingo church to the Major Domo restaurant and coffee house for breakfast) then 5 blocks past several museums to the centro. The troops are still there, but seem interested in new novias and calling on the cell phone much of the time. They have tents and portapotties for the state troops but everyone just walks by and says hello.

I love the life of the city--you definitely get the feel for the city in Casa Arnel. If you come here to be a gringo tourist hitting the bars forget it, but if you come to feel the life of a wonderful city then Casa Arnel is the place-and it is 75 every day and 50 degrees when we wake up with sun every morning.

Also Arnel was doing some remodelling and that was a bit loud, but it is all done he reassures me. Right now there are not many tourists so you get the pick of the rooms.

  • Stayed: December 2006, traveled with family
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15  Thank chucksf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 5, 2006

From the Cruz family you recieve attention, interest, helpful hints and warm reception into their holiday fiestas. We spent a month renting a suite, (small apt) and could join hotel guests across the street for their inexpensive breakfast menu. The hotel is charming and the sight for Christmas Posadas, 9 nightly celebrations with song and snacks, ending in a Christmas Eve meal with their family. The guests in their hotel and suites were from Europe as well as Canada and the U.S. They helped us gather needed furnishings for a large New Years dinner we hosted in our suite, and provided extra dishes and candles for the occasion. We met many people who come every year for the holidays. They also arrange for tours to the wonderful adventures in and around Oaxaca. We plan to return for their warm hospitality!

  • Stayed: January 2006, traveled as a couple
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11  Thank fire-opal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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