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Hotel Dona Esther
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Reviews (170)
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All reviewsgreat pizzacentral courtyardcolonial stylepretty courtyardon site restaurantwithin easy walking distancemiddle of townthird floorrestaurant serves good foodloved this hotelenjoyed our stayshort walkperfect locationhandicraft marketrooms are smallbeds were comfortablestayed for nights
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86 - 91 of 170 reviews
Reviewed December 23, 2011

As you may have surmised from the title of this brief article, the main point about this hostal/hotel is where it is situated: four blocks from Poncho Plaza - site of a daily market and the truly superb Saturday extravaganza, four to five blocks from the indigenous Saturday animal market, two blocks from a pleasant park, and, within a radius of a block or two, some pretty good restaurants. But you don't have to leave the premise to dine, as there is a restaurant within serving breakfast and dinner,and a small interior courtyard where one can take a self-catered lunch gleaned from the nearby convenience store ( the one vending Argentine and Chillean whites ) or from the small produce market adjacent the train station. There are also a few Bank ATM's in the vicinity; just what you'll likely require after a few turns through the Plaza. Arrive on a Friday, the night before the Saturday market and you can expect to be serenaded late into the evening by a Pan band. The house plan is colonial, the rooms rising aove around interior facing balconies. The rooms are spartan but clean and the price is modest for the location and service. There is a locked front gate, the interior accessed by a bell, providing that extra security all travelers require in their repose. Check it out; it's a budget travelers best!

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank MichiganZumbido
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 4, 2011

Hostal Dona Esther is in the perfect location, in the heart of Otavalo, near Plaza Bolivar. You can walk everywhere easily. Stay a day or two or three and enjoy it as a base camp for day trips to Cotacachi, Ibarra, and to see the surrounding wonders of nature. It is clean, comfortable, and has thoughtful amenities like candles in the rooms. Breakfast is served daily, dinner every night but Monday if I remember correctly. The produce is from an organic farm in Ibarra, and the recipes are the hosts. Try the traditional Ecuadorian Andean potato soup with cheese and avocado (Locro di Papa) and a local liquor called canelaso. The prices for lodging and food are reasonable; perfect for the budget traveler looking for an authentic, reliable Ecuadorian experience. - Wendy Jane of West Hollywood, CA

Room Tip: Each room faces the interior open Spanish-style courtyard. If there is loud cumbia music coming from the hillsides into the night, know that it is typical whenever there is a marriage or a big fiesta and is beyond the control of any hotel as there are no noise curfews as there are in North America
  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled solo
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Thank LightforthePlanet
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
walecuador, Owner at Hotel Dona Esther, responded to this reviewResponded December 6, 2011

Thank you, Wendy, for these great comments on our hotel, restaurant ánd the Otavalo area. It sure helps to make future guests realize how beautiful the area is. You told me about the "fiesta" you heard one night, and you're right, this is part of the indigenous culture and a part of Ecuador.
Hope to see you back some time! Wendy

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Reviewed November 25, 2011

Quaint little hostel with rooms that surroound an out door courtyard. Very charming place.
On site restraunt had fabulous home cooked meals and a pizza oven for the pizza lover.
Stay and meals were quite reasonable and hostel is within wlking distance to the market.
I would reccomend this place highly.

Room Tip: All rooms are excellent except for room #4. It is abouve the kitchen and it can be very noisy.
  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled with friends
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1  Thank evalor
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
walecuador, Owner at Hotel Dona Esther, responded to this reviewResponded November 28, 2011

Thanks very much for your nice review, We will certainly keep your remark about room no. 4 in mind, and see if we can do something about that. We will at least start by asking the ladies in the kitchen to keep it down!

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Reviewed May 16, 2011

We stayed at this place. After a full day of activities we wanted to get back to the hotel to use the internet only to find that they turn it off at night. The cost of the room doesn't include breakfast. We found there were better places to stay in Otavalo for the same price.

Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
3  Thank soltrane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
walecuador, Owner at Hotel Dona Esther, responded to this reviewResponded May 20, 2011

That's nice of this guest, placing the same review twice. It's a shame Tripadvisor doesn't have clear guidelines in these cases.
Anyway, like explained before (see our restaurant) we cannot let guests stay the whole night in the reading room accompanied by two non paying friends only to use the internet. We treated this people well, I really don't know why they are bothering so much to molest us.

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Reviewed May 11, 2011

Old colonial house done up very nicely. Noticeably cleaner than other hotels we have seen. The owner Wendy, is Dutch and speaks excellent American English. At $40 a night for a double room, I rate it as excellent value. The food was OK but not great. Although I have to say that Ecuadorians seem to have little idea of what constitutes good food. I haven't found anything worth writing about anywhere in Ecuador.

The hotel is close to the town center and the staff are pleasant and courteous.

The only blemish in our stay was that the hot water was almost cold. Other than that, I would be happy to stay again.

  • Stayed: May 2011
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Thank Binkynz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
walecuador, Owner at Hotel Dona Esther, responded to this reviewResponded May 12, 2011

Thanks for the nice review, I'm sorry you had trouble with the hot water, if we had known that, we could have done something about it. We have had other guests complimenting us about the great hot showers, so something must have gone wrong.
Anyway, hope to see you again some day.
Best regards,
Wendy

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