We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Fine, but too expensive”

We can't find prices for this accommodation
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this accommodation, but we can search other options in San Juan del Sur
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
The Maderas Village
Copenhagen, Denmark
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Fine, but too expensive”
Reviewed April 11, 2013

When we first got there, we thought it was a nice cottage and place. But compared the Nicaragua, and even in the San Juan del Sur area, it was really expensive to stay.
It was big in general - at bit too Americanized, but then you at least expected some larger and better beds, when you're paying that amount of money... With a huge common area which was almost empty, and with a kitchen that didn't work, front door that couldn't be lock (which resulted in unexpected guests to mess up the toilet), one bedroom door, toilet door, the one safety box and some of the windows was also defect.
The food tasted good, but the price was also really high - compared to the restaurant at the beach, which was placed 10 minutes walk from the "village", where we could get similar food cheaper, much cheaper. They are good to exploit your situation, that you are in the middle of no where, and nearly don't have other opportunists to eat and pay for the stay. And we got really surprised, when they added 17 % taxes to all - we weren't warned about that at the website (and 6 % for paying with credit card).
If the cottage was fully equipped, in better condition, and cleaner btw and just living there was like the real Nicaragua, then you are gonna get value for the money, and I would rate it with 4 stars.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank kmbt86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

146 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    109
    12
    10
    9
    6
See reviews for
1
31
45
3
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (28)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco
Level Contributor
38 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed April 9, 2013

My girlfriend and I stayed at Maderas Village recently and it was an absolute pleasure. The staff and the owner Matt (Dicky) are super laid back, but also attentive to the needs of the guests. They make you feel as though they really do care about their guests' experience.

Other miscellaneous great points about Maderas Village:

a) They organize several great trips for their guests through the week, e.g., boat cruises, Hermosa beach trips, volunteer trips to local communities to help build schools etc. The trips are all well organized and each one is a different but great experience in its own right.

b) The chef is exceptional. We ate all our breakfasts there and a few dinners. While we were there, they had "Mexican night" and "Sushi night" as dinner themes and while we chose to eat at the beach those days, all the other guests raved about the food. The dinners we did partake in were quite delectable. One caveat - let them know before 3 p.m. each day whether you plan to stay for dinner because the chef cooks one or two dishes for the evening under the assumption that all the guests are going to eat there unless someone specifically opts out.

c) They are very responsive and empathetic to their guests' concerns. Like any other hotel/hostel catering to on-the-average younger crowds, occasionally, this place gets people committed to raging at nights. A couple of nights while we were there, we ran into noise problems. I only mentioned it in passing to Dicky without thinking much of it, and he was nice enough to comp us our stay the nights we had noise problems without thinking twice about it. He also took the trouble of speaking to the other guests involved and we didn't have any other problems for the remainder of the trip.

d) The beach is down the hill (about 1/2 mile walk) from Maderas Village and really easy to get to. We made several trips back and forth from the beach during the course of each day with no issue. The uphill is somewhat steep but if you are in any kind of reasonable shape, this is not an issue. Also, there are some amazing hole-in-the-wall restaurants in the near vicinity that you need to ask the owners about. Two that come to mind are: a) the mixed nachos at Tacos Locos nearby and b) the langostas with garlic sauce and fried chicken with jalapeno sauce at Bar Chonchilo (formerly Charanga) - note I'm butchering the names here most likely but if you ask someone there, they will know exactly what place this is.

e) They sell great headbands - you have to get one of these. You can be an ugly s.o.b. and they will still make you look good.

f) The vibe here is friendly and communal. People get together in the common area during the day to chat and hang out over a few beers. We met some really interesting and entertaining people during our time here and hope to stay in touch with some for years to come.

g) The several hammocks on the premises are great to crash in on lazy post-surf session afternoons to catch up on your reading.

We definitely intend to plan a return visit.

In the interest of full disclosure, I should mention some things that they could improve on:

a) They run a tab for all their guests, so everything you order during your stay gets put on a tab that gets closed out at check out. We stayed four nights and I would have REALLY liked a print-out or email of all the various transactions on my tab before having to pay it, so I could have taken my time reviewing it before paying. Instead I found myself reviewing my tab on a computer screen over one of the owner's shoulder after I'd already had a few beers in me, which was certainly not the best circumstances to review 5 days worth of transactions. It took us a fair amount of head-scratching and spreadsheet usage to realize that the accountant had accidentally charged us for an extra night's stay so we ended up having to return to get credited for the night. It would have just avoided a whole lot of trouble and embarrassment had there just been more transparency and either a soft or hard-copy of the bill transmitted before final payment. But then again, if things were so formalized, this place wouldn't have the really relaxed and chill vibe that it does.

b) If you are just trying to do a couples thing and aren't crazy about meeting people, then request a room that's not in the main lodge. The common areas can get a bit rowdy when the crowds are younger.

Room Tip: If you are just trying to do a couples thing and aren't crazy about meeting people, then request...
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Chazmaster
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 8, 2013

To do something magical, you need to break a few rules. Because it's not a canned experience, being at Madaras Village is a lot like being with someone you love. They change, move, play and inspire you to make the most of your time. They offered me the space to have an incredibly unique and wonderful experience... Challange accepted!

There's a lot more happening at Maderas than just a boutique hotel. There is a passion and companionship and a dream of living free. Dive in, and you'll find that beyond some nice memories to take home with you, you'll find your own inspiration renewed.

Don't like something, talk about it - I've never seen a place and a group of people so able and willing to change on the fly, dig in to your concerns, and set them right... But be there, live the moment to see this, and you'll be right at home in a kind of paradise that longs for your participation.

It's a beautiful dance at Madaras, quite unique, and also, quite up to you... A lot like life, where play and imagination trump expectations and judgements, every time.

A seasoned travler.

  • Stayed June 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Oskie3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed April 7, 2013

"Value for money" is the main reason for me giving this place only 2 stars. If Maderas had been a place where we paid 20-30 dollars Per Night I would have given it 3-4 stars, But we paid 58 dollars Per person Per night (including the 17 % tax that They dont warn you about at the website and which Also applies to everything you order in the restaurant Where prices are already the double of What you May expect in Nicaragua).

I Think that if you wanna charge this much for accomodation/food in Nicaragua then you really need to deliver the extra value that your guests are willing to pay for. This did not happen.

Let me start with the cottage. Its huge, and it looks very Nice. My first impression was "Wow". This impression changed while There. First, I Think its fair to expect a Nice and comfortable bed when paying 58 dollars Per Night. I paid only 30 dollars at another 4 Star hotel and Got free breakfast, a King size bed and free shuttle to the airport. At Maderas we were 5 people sharing 3 beds. That might be fine if you are a couple or if the bed is Big enough for two friends without having too spoon for 9 days. The website says the cottage is ideal for 4-6 friends. We expected to share rooms But not to spoon for 9 days. More than one flat pillow each would Also been Nice.

Also, There are no fans or AC which I would Also expect at this price. There are no Real windows, just mosquito nets. First Night was one out of Many windy nights in Nicaragua, and we basically had a small tornado in our bedroom. The sheets would literally fly off the bed. Once the Wind stopped it just Got really hot instead. I Will agree that the howler monkeys are a cool experience, But dont expect cute little "Uh-Uh" monkey noices- more like "ROOOAAAAR". And due to the lack of windows you Will hear every noice like They were actually in your bedroom. Cool? Maybe. Sleeping quality? Bad.

Other comments:

- Our front door could not close

- none of the front doors could be locked so basically anyone was free to enter the cottage (bedrooms could be locked). We had someone walking in taking a dump and stuffing the toilet with toiletpaper. Community living I guess?

- One of our bathroom doors could not be closed. The combination of one bad stomach and a bathroom door that cant be closed when sharing rooms was not ideal.

- The common area is huge But pretty empty. A few chairs, a small table, a fridge and a Big zink that did not work.

- One safety box did not work so everyone kept their stuff in my room which was not very practical.


The food:

Alright, But pretty simple. Definitely overpriced. We tried to eat out a lot But the isolated location allows for overcharging.

The location:
Close to the Beach which is Nice. But I would have preferred staying in town Where the food is cheaper and you May Take a cheap shuttle to the Beach (5 dollars both ways until late afternoon) instead of paying 40-45 dollars both ways for a cab each time we Wanted to go to town after 4pm.

"Americanness":

The people are Nice and all But Be prepared for a lot of "americaness". If you are European or if you are looking for a authentic experience, you might find it "too much". Just saying.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Fyijblojgf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed April 4, 2013

Eco-Quiz: Are you fed up with mad unchill hotels having your room ready for you within 5-6 hours of arrival? Been thirsting for interactions with other rad travelers screaming at you after they discover you in *their* room, and only after you've been told by the staff that it's *your* room? Are you down with sharing experiences with like-minded managers who blame their staff for their own mistakes? How about keys to the room that dubiously belongs to you? Do keys TOTALLY HARSH ON YOUR MELLOW, BRO? If your answer to any of these questions is yes, then run, don't walk, to Maderas Village.

Nestled in the hills above the beautiful Playa Maderas, Maderas Village is an apartheid inspired eco-lodge, the heavily Instagrammed brainchild of a Nicaraguan off-shoot of the Manson Family. This locally sourced, organically harvested, Circle Jerk Jamboree has everything the discerning white person could ever ask for: two Swedes, Bon Iver, rain sticks, compost piles, Bon Iver, a stunning and utter lack of coherent management or even any management at all, Bon Iver, and Black Jesuses.

The unifying philosophy behind Maderas Village is "Relax Harder, Brah." Owners, DeWitt (Ambassador of Vibe), Dickie (Curator of Alibis), Ashton Kutcher (Resident Famous Brosef), Dave (Gnome of Gnargliness), Alan (Black Jesus), and Chris Kirkpatrick (former N*Sync member) have this down to an artform. They're so relaxed that they don't do anything, pushing their guests to the limits of their patience and subjecting them to stress, thereby forcing them to relax *even* harder.

One night at Maderas Village surrounded by fellow travelers from such exotic locales as Toronto, Chicago, or Queens, and catered to by an all-Nicaraguan staff who will even fetch your beers if your legs are feeling too relaxed for the walk? About $65. Learning how to play Helter Skelter on naturally fallen, reclaimed didgeridoos while questioning literally everything you thought you knew about hospitality and limitless nature of your own happiness? Priceless. (And 110% righteous!)

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
34 Thank em2667
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Juan del Sur, Rivas, Nicaragua
Level Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed March 27, 2013

Loved the food, great staff!!! I planned to stay for 3 days and ended up for three weeks. I would recommend this place for a extended stay, I have made many great friends whille vacationing here at Maderas Village and can't wait to go back!!!

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Jeremy K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
28 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed March 18, 2013

Stayed recently at Maderas Village. Let me start by saying that Playa Maderas is pretty. It was great at sunset to watch the surfers while drinking Tonas on the beach. The staff and owners of Maderas Village are very friendly.

We enjoyed the breakfasts and lunches....but the dinners were average, and there was only one option for $12. Compared to other places we stayed in Nicaragua, this felt like a far less authentic Nica experience. The crowd there was very young, and I agree with the previous reviewer, that I felt like I was in Brooklyn more than Nicaragua.

Finally, I wanted to mention that we stayed in a casita that was clearly still under construction. In fact we came home one afternoon to relax on our hammock, but could not use it because there were people working on the lower level. There was also a lot of construction noise from neighboring casitas during the day. At $95 a night, this was our splurge of our trip, and the active construction was disappointing.

In the end I just think Maderas Village was not for us.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank BJen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near San Juan del Sur
0.5 mi away
Rancho Cecilia Nicaragua
Rancho Cecilia Nicaragua
#3 of 3 in Playa Maderas
4.5 of 5 bubbles 144 reviews
1.2 mi away
Morgan's Rock Hacienda and Ecolodge
1.0 mi away
Mango Rosa Nicaragua
Mango Rosa Nicaragua
#1 of 4 in Playa Marsella
4.5 of 5 bubbles 415 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
0.6 mi away
Casa Bahia Hotel
Casa Bahia Hotel
#3 of 4 in Playa Marsella
4.5 of 5 bubbles 70 reviews
10.4 mi away
Aqua Wellness Resort
Aqua Wellness Resort
#1 of 1 in Playa Redonda
4.5 of 5 bubbles 578 reviews
0.0 mi away
Arte-Sano Hotel Cafe
Arte-Sano Hotel Cafe
#14 of 27 in San Juan del Sur
5.0 of 5 bubbles 11 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to The Maderas Village? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about The Maderas Village

Property: The Maderas Village
Address: Maderas Beach, San Juan del Sur 230492, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #21 of 74 Specialty Lodging in San Juan del Sur
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 15
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We are located at Maderas Beach, about 20 minutes outside of San Juan del Sur. We offer a three daily meals, either a la carte or as part of a pre-fixe menu. We are like a boutique hotel, but less pretentious. We love people who want a place to surf, read, debate, and do yoga daily; who want to lose themselves in a place, and find themselves in the people. We offer tailored packages for short-term guests and very reasonably priced rates for people planning to stay longer than 3 weeks. We are not in Lonely Planet or other guidebooks; we like having to be found. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Maderas Village Hotel San Juan Del Sur
The Maderas Village Nicaragua/San Juan Del Sur

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing