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“THE place to stay in Galápagos!”

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Semilla Verde Boutique Hotel
Ranked #1 of 21 Hotels in Puerto Ayora
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed March 25, 2011

When we checked Trip Advisor's site while planning our trip to Galapagos, everything seemed to point into Semilla Verde's direction as THE place to stay. THAT COULDN'T HAVE BEEN MORE RIGHT!! We had a PERFECT stay at Daisy and Robert's... The place is beautiful, charming, super-clean... one of those places where you get in and the vibe is just great and you inmediately feel like home. Of course that has to do a lot with Robert and Daisy and their staff too! Food is great (Daisy is a great cook!) and Robert is just in every single detail, anticipating everything in order to make things just perfect and easy. We had read the reviews about the charming room numer 1 but it was taken by the moment we contacted Robert... so we stayed in room number 3 and it was lovely too! Really comfortable, wtih everything you need and more... We enjoyed a lot our private terrace/balcony! All three rooms have one.
Also, all tours were suggested and arranged by Robert and it all worked perfectly!
I also have to mention a special situation we lived while at SV... The tsunami in Japan was the day before we were leaving Galápagos... There was no need of evacuation for us, since we were in higher ground than people in Puerto Ayora (which did need to be evacuated). So we just stayed at the hostal and relaxed that day... Robert offered us free meals since it wasn't possible to go anywhere that day and he even said we could stay for free the day after in case our flight got cancelled... WHAT ELSE COULD YOU ASK FOR? I RECOMMEND 100% TO STAY IN SEMILLA VERDE WITH ROBERT AND DAISY!!!! Thank you Guys for making our time in GPS so awesome!!

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank MarianaARG
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed March 17, 2011

Our stay at Semilla Verde just happened to coincide with the recent Japan earthquake and resulting tsunami. While it was a little unnerving to wake to the news that the island would be expecting a significant wave of water later that day it was such a relief to know that we didn't have to pack up our things and go to higher ground. Semilla Verde is many meters above sea-level and we spent the day relaxing. The same cannot be said for Robert and Daysi as they were accepting many friends and strangers into their living quarters below. Despite this hectic time they still asked who would like suppers and who would like a free of charge fruit meal, as we really would have no other options for a place to eat. (you don't really need other options - Daysi's cooking is fantastic) Robert also assured the other guests who were supposed to fly out the next day that if flights couldn't leave they could return and stay free of charge as well. In short, we were very well looked after, despite his other obligations with the others downstairs. We heard some unsettling stories about tourists staying in shore-side hotels who were told to grab a taxi and head to higher ground. No organization or care taken by their hotel proprietors! And no idea of a place to go. Everyone has said how amazing and hospitable they are here, and how the coffee is great and the bugs are minimal, so I needn't re-hash that. I would simply like to point out how in a time of impending disaster, people's true color's shine and Robert and Daysi were ever professional with their guests comfort even when it could not have been easy to continue to focus on us.
I would certainly recommend them.

For those of you who are wondering about the damage that the tsunami caused, it wasn't very extensive, and this was apparently the worst wave they have ever had during human occupation. Some buildings were flooded and the residents were almost done with the major clean-up by the time we left, 2 days later.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank ADS0084
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 16, 2011

Robert and Daysi, who own and manage Semilla Verde, are excellent hosts. Daysi (currently pregnant with their second child) does most of the cooking for meals, which are definitely excellent, especially with coffee grown and roasted by Robert. Semilla Verde is 12 km from Puerto Ayora, and a taxi ride costs exactly $5. Robert will credit your bill for one to-and-fro trip to town each day, if he doesn’t take you himself. Our first day there, he did take us to town to show us where various places of interest were located, including the dive shop where I needed to arrange rental gear. BTW, the dive shop picked me up each morning from the Semilla Verde for diving, so no problem being out of town. Taxis (well, often pickup trucks) were not difficult to arrange, so we could also go to town for dinner. We stayed in the top floor guest room, which was magnificent and highly recommended. It was very peaceful with a balcony and hammock, had a great view all the way to the coast (including even spotting big tortoises walking past a couple times), spacious, well-equipped, and comfortable. A family of four grown-ups had the two downstairs bedrooms, but they were apparently quite comfortable too. The living room was large and inviting too. Being in the highlands, the large grounds were also verdant, so walks around the property were also pleasant.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank travelin_tommy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 7, 2011

We wouldn't normally review, but if your going to the galapagos islands this place is amazing. After an 8 day boat trip this place will help you take on board what you have seen and sit you down and make you relax. Food was beautifully prepared and presented, the rooms immaculately clean, service from Robert was informative and friendly and very helpful. We had the place to ourselves and the views were to die for. Not much else you can say really just a splendid place to stay.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank southernking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 17, 2011

from the minute we decided to go to the galapagos, until the end of our stay in Santa Cruz, Robert was a constant source of unbiased help and advice. we emailed him initially to find out whether we should stay on one island, take a cruise, or do a combination, the advice we got was detailed and freely given even before we had booked to stay at semilla Verde. We opted to stay in one of the amazing rooms in this small and intimate hotel and were very pleased with our decision. Robert and his young family and wife live in rooms below and so you get to know them as people which is lovely. the room had the most amazing view right over the forest to the ocean, with often a giant tortoise below in a watering hole, and a mocking bird visited our balcony daily. Our itinerary was all devised and booked by Robert and was faultless..We did day trips on boats to the main islands, seeing different wild life at each. Robert himself guided us round the island highlights, was extremely knowledgable and we had lunch at Semilla Verde twice, three courses cooked by his wife. we had a free taxi into town (about ten minutes) where there were many restaurants to choose from, including some upmarket ones, where we could celebrate a birthday in style.
then back to Semilla verde to relax in the spacious lounge, drink wine on the balcony overlooking the forest, browse his extensive library of galapagos related books or chat to new found friends staying in the other rooms. the bed was comfy, the room Large with bags of storage space, and the night was peaceful away from the town. we cannot recommend this place highly enough.

  • Stayed: February 2011
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Thank Ruth Flecknell F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 6, 2011

We just spent 10 days in the Galapagos, 7 of them at Semilla Verde. Robert and Daysi have created a beautiful retreat in the midst of the cool, green highlands of Santa Cruz Island. Our room was an aerie from which we could view the rainforest canopy and the coffee plantation below in comfort and seclusion. We enjoyed lying on the hammock, visited by a Galapagos mockingbird, yellow warblers and a variety of finches, gazing down on a few giant tortoises munching the vegetation. Robert is a superb naturalist and guide, Daysi an inspired cook, and their daughter Iona a delightful playmate. Together they provided a welcoming home base for our exploration of the Galapagos. Before our arrival, at our request, Robert arranged a series of excursions for us, in a well-thought-out order, which allowed us to understand and appreciate the incredible complexity, beauty and natural history of the islands.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank carolandphilip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 5, 2011

What can I say about this fantastic travel find that already hasn't been said on this forum?...I think I will just offer a personal reaction to my very lucky visit to Semilla Verde and skip the specific details that have been mentioned in all their justly derserved glowing reviews...Over this past Holiday Season I was on a solo 2 and 1/2 month vacation which included Costa Rica, all the major travel paces in Peru, the Galapagos Islands and the Semilla Verde Guesthouse where I stayed in the Galapagos and NOT on board a boat tour to see these islands. I have done the boat tours before on other unqiue island groups and only partially enjoyed those experiences .. Well, this was my FAVORITE place for accomidations I experienced during my extensive tour. The Semilla Verde Guesthouse is such a beautiful place on this earth... From the very friendly, fun loving and enthusiastic Grimstone family who own and manage the first class lodge and guesthouse to their delicious and large breakfasts and the dinners prepared by Daysi Grimstone, Robert's extremely culinary talented wife and charming hostess...to the exotic beauty of the extensive grounds and trails and all the tortises enjoying their 'good life' on the lush expansive but easily walkable scenic paths that Robert, the naturalist guide owner, has carefully groomed in his rain forest and coffee plantation trees, one could not possibly ask for a more wonderful spot in which to stay. The accomidations are very lovely and complete without a high end price including excellent cable T.V. and balconies with beautiful dramatic views. Their advice and guidance for day tours along with Robert's own special guiding tours and, as I already mentioned, their relaxed but infectious sense of humor and personalities make this a memorable place to experience like no other... you feel so at ease and you become a new friend immediately...just let Robert advise and book all your tours and activities for you... you won't miss a thing as he has a wealth of experience guiding people through all their travels in the Galapagos. You know, you can really tell how much they enjoy having people experience this amazing place they have created and I am looking forward to returning to the wonderful Semilla Verde Guesthouse and the Galapagos someday. Because of the abundant hospitality of Robert and his family, I saw all the islands, animals and places I wanted to see and experienced a truely beautiful oasis staying with them...one week was not enough. I wish I had planned on staying longer.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled solo
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Thank pianomanOrlando
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Semilla Verde Boutique Hotel

Address: Km 12, via a Baltra | Isla Santa Cruz, Puerto Ayora 200350, Ecuador (Formerly Semilla Verde Galapagos Lodge)
Phone Number:
Location: Ecuador > Galapagos Islands > Santa Cruz > Puerto Ayora
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Green Hotel in Puerto Ayora
Price Range: $217 - $262 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Semilla Verde Boutique Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
"Semilla Verde is an exceptional hotel with the customs and personality of a traditional guesthouse." We believe your experience in the Galapagos Islands should be as unique and natural as you are. So, here at Semilla Verde we offer you the chance to stay somewhere far removed from your busy life and the standard hotel offering you may be used to. We invite you to step into another world, the original Galapagos, the true and enchanting islands. And, to experience the wonders of a rural forest dwelling and life alongside the unique wildlife you came so far to see. Your stay will be based in an original and idyllic rural retreat where peace, privacy and Galapagos wildlife abounds. You will enjoy one-to-one personal service, traditional home cooking, panoramic views from private terraces and exclusive access to nature trails through twelve acres of private forest where giant tortoises lumber freely and native birds thrive. At night, gaze up into the unspoilt majesty of the milky way. Nine comfortable en-suite bedrooms with AC, WiFi and DVD just 15 minutes taxi ride from Puerto Ayora town, costing just $7 e/w. All in all, an authentic and genuinely friendly and authentic land-base for your Galapagos adventure and an all encompassing alternative or add-on to a traditional cruise ship experience. Semilla Verde works with a local tour agency to offer complete hotel & tour package options too. You will visit outlying islands and local sites with qualified naturalist guides and experience first hand the beauty of Galapagos and it's unique flora and fauna - from giant tortoises and lava lizards to marine iguanas and playful sea lions, from volcanic landscapes to cloud forest. Return to the hotel at the end of an incomparable day and share your travel stories around the main dining table with other guests, whilst enjoying dinner freshly prepared in our kitchen. Indeed we don't work from a fixed menu rather we generally prepare one recipe for the group, but each guest receives a serving according to their individual preferences. The location is secluded but convenient and very safe. There is not another residence within hundreds of meters of this oasis. Semilla Verde remains true to the philosophy on which it originally built for good friends and family, ensuring a level of intimacy, small number of employees offering very personal service and home cooking your will only find in a traditional guesthouse. Semilla Verde comprises two hotel builidings some 100ft apart - the Semilla Verde Lodge (Rooms 1-6) and the Finch Wing (Rooms 7-9). They can work in unison or as separate entities for separate parties. betwen the two there is a fully equipped yoga studio where you can enjoy individual or group practice. Galapagos is famous for it's volcanic landscapes and unique wildlife, but it can also be somewhere for you to rediscover your true and unique nature, somewhere you can feel yourself again. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Semilla Verde Galapagos Hotel Puerto Ayora
Semilla Verde Boutique Hotel Galapagos Islands/Puerto Ayora, Santa Cruz

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