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“Paradise in a beautiful country”

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Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa
Ranked #7 of 27 Hotels in San Juan del Sur
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Portland, OR
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Paradise in a beautiful country”
Reviewed December 31, 2007

On our first visit to Nicaragua we arrived at Pelican Eyes exhausted from a long border crossing from Costa Rica. Of course the road into San Juan Del Sur is an adventurous one...but when we arrived we knew we had made the right choice. Pelican Eyes is such a beautiful place and obviously intent on maintaining a real Central American feel. The people could not have been kinder and Kathy, one of the owners, went out of her way to make sure that we had everything that we needed.
We were travelling with my 9 yr. old son and he loved all the animals at the on-site animal rescue clinic. He was able to hold and play with a monkey every day as well as many cats and dogs. Heaven for a kid!
We stayed in 3 different villas and loved all of them. Each offered something a little different and you could definitely let them know when you make your reservation what you would like during your stay (sunsets, proximity to animals or swimming pool, etc.).
We were quite surprised to have such access to internet, tv, dvds, etc. in Nicaragua. We had assumed there would be a real sense of 'roughing it' but that is not what Pelican Eyes is about. This place is on par with fantastic hotels in big cities around the world and anyone visiting will not find much missing. That said, there will be bugs that survive the efficient cleaning staff but if you really can't handle it they will spray your villa down for you...
We loved this place so much for so many reasons...the incredible food, the beautiful pools, the lovely and clearly happy staff, the concern for the community around them and the care being given to animals with injuries. This is a wonderful place to stay while you visit Nicaragua and we are already planning our next visit. Come here with a sense of adventure (which will serve you well in exploring the rest of the country) and then let the beauty of this place wash over you while you enjoy your first sunset and you might find your definition of 'home' has expanded!

  • Liked — gorgeous view, beaufiful villa
  • Disliked — loved it all!
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank NancyIndyH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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nicaragua
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed December 2, 2007

Our stay here was fantastic!! The food was great, the service excellent (very polite, there to cater to every need and going out of their way to render good service), the room was a dream, the overall feeling is that of being on a great relaxing vacation without a worry in the world! Definitely recommend to stay here!

  • Liked — Great service/food/accomodation
  • Disliked — the steps to get back to your room (but they will drive you if you ask)
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Check in / front desk
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank NicaraguaAnne
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level 6 Contributor
81 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
Reviewed November 30, 2007

We were two couples traveling for Thanksgiving week. We asked for reservations for two rooms but all they had was a villa with two bedrooms and two baths with ocean view, so we took it, and we loved it. The villa was hugh with tons of A/C and tons of hot water. It was completely private and quiet. The bay view from our front porch was georgeous and the porch was large and complete with rocking chairs and ceiling fans and several friendly cats.

Food was excellent. Breakfast is no longer a buffet, but is a full breakfast with about 10 entree choices. Restaurant La Canoa at the top was our favorite for breakfast, or sunset viewing by the infinity pool.

The walk down into town was short and easy and there are a bunch of excellent seafood restaurants there.

One caveat, this hotel is built up the side of a hill, thus the great views. It was 85 steps from the front desk up to our villa, and an additional 120 steps to the restaurant/pool area at the top. The main restaurant and pool is by the front desk.

  • Liked — The villa was so nice
  • Disliked — steps
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank planetjim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
BFBubbles
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed November 27, 2007

Stayed at PE lastweek. Nice enough place and staff, but lots of problems.

Phone/internet didnt work
phone didnt work
VERY sick from resort food
No hot water
construction
Power went out regularly

Stayed November 2007
Helpful?
1 Thank BFBubbles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Jose
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed November 16, 2007

It was so hard to find and so worthwhile. We booked for three nights and stayed two weeks. My husband and I travel everywhere, all the time, bargains and top dollar, and we are rarely surprised, positively or negatively. We were overwhelmed here. So much for so little. And as they tell you up front, come for a vacation and stay for the people.

We’ve never met such truly hospitable staffers before. They love their jobs, they love their boss and they sure seemed to love us (and every other guest present.) From food servers to silent gardeners, they were kind, considerate, humble yet proud and giving.

This hotel is beautiful and they are building so much more. The owner is hard to find but when you do he’s a doll. Jiff, the manager, is all too willing to go out of her way and Douglas at the front desk will take your breath away. There are animals everywhere and we were delighted but yes, there were some folks who were not. There is an animal clinic there and they care for animals, people and who knows what all else. A great concept and so naturally part of the scene. The hotel is fronts an education foundation that has so many projects and worthy causes your heads will twirl.

We went on the local canopy(Flying Frog,) we rode horses, we went on the Pelican Eyes sailboat (Captain Jim is a treasure,) we went fishing, we went to the island of Ometepe, and we ate and drank way too much. The restaurants are fabulous and the food (the servings will knock you over not to say even embarrass you) was tremendous… as good as our favorite retreats at home.

You’ll meet local foreigners (some will even try and lure you away) and even they are nice and fun to be with. The hotel is all over a hill and Chris will tell you that they kiddingly call it the stairmaster. The place is really all over the hills. We were way up in the setting and we did have some power outages but we were warned and the staff was very good about helping us out. Chris you NEED irons in the rooms! Hey, but it was lovely to have someone else iron for me.

The architecture is stunning. The setting exceptional. The town delightful. The people inspirational. Enjoy this place and tell them we sent you. Can’t wait to go back.

  • Liked — The staff and the beauty of the hotel
  • Disliked — No Iron, sorry Chris
  • Stayed September 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Check in / front desk
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    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank DoneDeal69
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami, Florida
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed November 2, 2007

I stayed at Pelican Eyes this past May (sorry for the late review) and I had a wonderful visit, but it did not come without a couple of issues. My friend booked the room directly through their website and called the hotel to provide a credit card number. Unfortunately, when we got there they had no record of our reservation and he had accidentally left the print confirmation at home. After first telling us that they were booked they were finally able to accomodate us in on of the newer villas at the very top of the mountain. It was not quite what we had reserved, but we decided to take it.

From that point on our visit was amazing. The villa they gave us was brand new, huge and beautifully decorated. The gardens and landscaping throughout the property were stunning. We had both a mountain and ocean view from our villa and only a short trek to the upper pool and bar/restaurant. Everyone who worked there was amazingly hospitable.

One thing I will caution on is that if you are unable to walk up hill for a long distance do not take a Villa too far up the mountain. The hotel has a system of stairs that lead you down to the main restaurant and access to the town, but the trek back up can be quite exhausting.

I enjoyed my time at Pelican Eyes very much and plan to visit again early next year. I would recommend it to anyone, but make sure to print a copy of your reservation confirmation.

P.S. As a side note for any gay travelers (as myslef) Nicaragua is not known for it's gay acceptance, but the Pelican Eys hotel staff and everyone in SJDS were VERY accepting and welcoming of myself and my partner. I never once encountered anyone with ill feelings towards us in SJDS or any where else in Niacaragua, of course keeping in mind that discretion and respect towords others should always be used.

  • Liked — Clean, beautiful, if you get the whole villa they are huge, great decor
  • Disliked — It is a long hike if you stay at one of the villas at the top of the hill
  • Stayed May 2007, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank rdlles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Indianapolis, IN
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed October 25, 2007

We honeymooned at Pelican Eyes and simply loved it. The staff is extremely accomodating, and the location is stunning. All drinks and food can just be signed to your room, making it unique for nicaragua. The food is FANTASTIC, and the included breakfast was a treat each day. We went on the canopy tour with "Da flyin Frog" and really enjoyed it; we also went to the beach at La Flor and watched sea turtles hatch -- organized by the hotel. The upper pool is great -- the view of san juan del sur is amazing. We felt very safe, also -- great job on security. The hotel picked us up exactly on time from our hotel in Granada in a new and very clean toyota 4 wheel drive with leather seats -- made the somewhat bumpy ride very comfortable. They also arranged transport to managua in the same vehicle, which was great. Also -- the cost of transport was paid in the total bill, so no haggling or paying the driver -- made it very relaxing and easy. I would recommend Pelican Eyes extremely highly!!

  • Liked — the staff!! Anything you want, you can have!
  • Disliked — lots of stairs.
  • Stayed October 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank wvscott
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa

Property: Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa
Address: De la Parroquia 1 1/2 cuadras al este, San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua
Location: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in San Juan del Sur
#3 Green Hotel in San Juan del Sur
#6 On the Beach Hotel in San Juan del Sur
#6 Romantic Hotel in San Juan del Sur
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 50
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa offers a stunning hillside location and panoramic views of San Juan del Sur and the ocean beyond. Our infinity pools, spacious accommodations, romantically lush gardens, wonderful restaurants, open air bars, and one-of-a-kind San Juan Del Sur coastline sailing adventure are a unique experience.A visit to our Tranquila Day Spa is an experience of sheer indulgence. We offer a menu of massage and body treatments to ensure that you truly relax on your romantic Nicaraguan getaway. Experience more of Nicaragua with day trips to Granada or the artisan markets in Masaya. Here at the resort, open air yoga classes, water aerobics, and active local excursions (arranged by our concierge) help keep you fit while visiting paradise. Even our brick stairs—winding up the hillside — contribute to the cause!Our San Juan del Sur hotel’s mission is to provide a unique and memorable Nicaragua vacation experience in every aspect of your stay. Our friendly staff endeavors to fulfill every possible need or special request (and to predict those wishes perhaps not yet even realized!)No request is too big or too small. Let us know what we can do to enhance your stay in paradise. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pelican Eyes Hotel San Juan Del Sur
Hotel Pelican Eyes
Resort Pelican Eyes
Pelican Eyes Resort & Spa Nicaragua/San Juan Del Sur

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