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Magic Stone
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Reviews (161)
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Reviewed July 26, 2013

Many thanks to our hosts Aase & Ove for making our stay so great.

The rooms are super comfortable, clean and nicely furnished. We also got to know Ove's parrot!

The place is less 10min walk from main square, the taxi there is about $1 (and the bus terminal).

The breakfast (which was additional to room price) was super nice and there's a good choice beyond the usual eggs :)

Definitely would recommend to friends.

Tip: go to Antenas by taxi for a view of Tungurahua.

  • Stayed: July 2013
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Thank lukaszadam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 17, 2013

Other reviewers have covered the facilites etc, so here's what "magical" about Magic Stone. The owners, Aase and Ove. Aase and Ove have got it down perfectly!They are truly one of the nicest couples I have ever met, and I say can say that without reservation. Their breakfast is something to look forward to every morning, only if you are smart enough to order it. We tried different delicacies every morning..we were there for 4 nights and didn't want to leave! They give you lots of info about the best hot springs, tours, restaurants, details of the Cathedral and other local history.In just 4 days, they truly became good friends. They are not meddlesome , neither are they standoffish..just truly interested in the well being of their guests, trying to help them to enjoy their stay in Banos.They could charge three times more if they were located somewhere else, but Banos is generally underpriced to begin with. They do it for the love of it! Even if I were on a strict budget, I would spend a couple of nights here just for the pleasure of their hospitality. They really go the extra mile to help. Certainly one fo the most accomodating/nicest B&Bs I have ever stayed in, and I've been to over 70 countries. I'm now planning my next trip to..Denmark, Aase and Ove's home country. Just hope all the Danes are as nice!
PS I only regret not being able to go with Aase to the Amazon, since we had so much rain. I'm sure it's FANTASTIC!

Room Tip: The red room has a nice loft..please be careful when climbing/descending the ladder.
  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank jinbay932
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 9, 2013

We stayed here on two separate occasions during our trip to Ecuador. Our first stay was over Carnivale weekend, so when we were greeted we were also given a tasty Danish pastry (and coffee) that was apparently only made during Carnivale.

The room was nice, warm and cozy. Never had issues with wifi or the shower, even with all the extra people in town for Carnivale. They let us know up front that breakfast cost extra and why (I think this was right after the rather rude review that was left)- they said it was to keep the cost of the room down and leave it up to us if we wanted to eat there or in town. We actually didn't end up getting breakfast from them, unfortunately, because the town is so chock full of great places for breakfast it's hard to try everything. The shower is fantastic, but be careful if you take a really hot shower - there will be a ton of humidity build up, like a steam room.

On the note of showers - ask the owners where the best hot spring to go is. There is one within about a 30 min walk (nice little hike, nothing crazy) that all the locals go to. We spent a good two hours there just hanging out and chatting with the locals while we soaked, it was great.

The area is quiet and safe, once again it was Carnivale and there was minimal noise. Our later visit was completely quiet. You can walk around here at night, no problem. The B&B is just far enough from town that you can easily walk there, but it's in a nice, quiet area. Also when we were there, there was a tiny puppy (neighbor's dog I think) that was ridiculously adorable. He's probably a bit bigger now, but he's very friendly :)

I would recommend this B&B for anyone coming through Banos. The owners were wonderful, the room was great, I have zero complaints.

  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank LazyRose
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 19, 2013

What more could you ask for?

I've been travelling in Ecuador for 10 months now (Cuenca, Vilcabamba, Salinas.) Aside from some spectacular private residences I've rented long-term, the Magic Stone is the nicest and most relaxing place I've stayed, and I've stayed in at least 20 hosterias and hotels.

Magic Stone is located an easy 5 minute walk from town center at the end of a quiet, dead-end street. You never have to take a taxi. Most places I've stayed in Ecuador either have so much traffic going by that your bed might as well be in the middle of the street (Cuenca,) or roosters screeching outside your window at sunrise (Vilcabamba.) The Magic Stone is so quiet you could hear a pin drop. In fact it's so peaceful compared to many places I've stayed, I need to set my alarm clock or I'd sleep all day.

The recently built two-unit guest house is extremely well constructed and nicely designed - two things you don't often see in Ecuador. I've been staying in the "blue" room for a week. Lovely. Everything works. Very comfortable Futon style bed. TV, although I haven't turned it on yet. Good lighting - two attractive fixtures on the walls - not the ubiquitous naked light bulb hanging from a socket that you come across all too often. A desk for journaling or computing (with lamp) and two nightstands, each with a lamp.

Six electrical outlets (that actually work) in the room (one of these is European style) and one in the bathroom. Many places I've stayed in Ecuador have crappy outlets that your plug will just fall out of, so tight, functional outlets are important to me.

Two windows in the room, one in the bathroom, good natural light. This is a nice size room with high ceilings that doesn't feel claustrophobic, as many living spaces in Ecuador can seem, especially older ones.

Great bathroom with a good shower head, plenty of hot water, and as an added bonus - the first and only toilet-paper flushable toilet I have come across in Ecuador. The sink also has cold AND hot water, many bathroom sinks in Ecuador are cold water only.

There's a stack of breakfast order forms in the desk drawer. Just fill one out at night and tell Aase and Ove what time you want it. I usually have breakfast at the table and chairs set up just outside my room. A nice cheese plate, some of Aase's famous homemade bread (best I've had in Ecuador,) coffee, orange juice. Had the pancakes (crepes) today, with butter, strawberry jam and syrup - excellent. Are you ready to make a reservation yet?

Oh, and regarding the cheese plate. This is not the inexpensive "queso fresca" that you see everywhere in Ecuador (and isn't bad, if a bit bland.) I can tell you that at least one of the cheeses I had yesterday sells for about $25/pound - in Ecuador. If you can find it.

I do want to reiterate that Magic Stone is a Bed & Breakfast, not a hostel, so breakfast is a la carte, as would be expected. Considering the quality (and room service!) It's quite reasonable and as good or better than anything you'll find in town (there are some pretty good restaurants in Baños.)

Aase and Ove are great, always bending over backwards to make sure you're happy, but not too "in your face," as is sometimes the case when staying in a B & B. They're great resources for information on things like the best, cheapest, and least-crowded thermal baths in town, or arranging a (highly recommended) tour of the waterfalls.

Security is tight as a drum. I have two computers with me, three cameras, a Bose SoundDock, an Ipod, a Smartphone, and Grado headphones, and really don't even feel the need to lock my door. Mulla the friendly and playful dog also keeps an eye on things.

Wifi is good. Not the fastest I've seen, coming through at a consistent and steady 11mbps, but it's a solid connection and hasn't dropped off once since I've been here.

There is a filtered water dispenser just outside the main house, a nice touch.

One word of advice. I mentioned you don't have to take a taxi here, as it's an easy walk to and from town. When you first arrive in town with luggage, you will need a taxi. I found that about half the taxi drivers in town either don't know where the Magic Stone is or don't get my accent. You might get lucky on the first try. Or you might have to try five.

  • Stayed: April 2013, traveled solo
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3  Thank DanaTeton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 12, 2013

We spent three nights at Magic Stone and really enjoyed the cozy apartment/room and the owners company. Aase and Ove are wonderful people and being with them was like reconnecting with old friends. We also had the chance to be introduced :-) to their talking parrot ! He was so funny and so cute ! The homemade breakfasts are the more delicious we had during our stay in Ecuador.
The double room was like an apartment and it's great when you are traveling with a friend. I had a double bed downstairs and my friend had a double bed upstairs (mezzanine) so each one could enjoy some privacy. And everything was perfectly clean.
It's certainly the best place to stay in Banos and I will stay there again on my next trip !

  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Monique943
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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