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“Great find close to Tikal”

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La Casa De Don David
Ranked #1 of 12 El Remate B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed January 17, 2009

This is a fantastic place in El Remate, which is about equidistant between Flores (where the airport is) and Tikal (where the Mayan temples are. It's worth staying closer to Tikal in order to get there early in morning - the trip from Casa Don David to Tikal is about 30 minutes and they can help you with all the logistics.

The restaurant is great, with good views over the lake. The grounds of the hotel are extensive and nice to stroll in and there's a good open room full of hammocks to relax in.

El Remate as a town doesn't have too much to offer, but it's as good or better than Flores.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank linc0635
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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313 - 319 of 395 reviews

Reviewed January 15, 2009

We arrived at the Santa Elena airport right at dusk so I was a little leery about renting a car and driving to El Ramate (especially after riding the roads of the highlands in western Guatemala) in the dark, but the roads were good and the route to Tikal well marked so we had no problems. We rented the car from Tabarini and that worked out well (we did have to make the reservation in advance so that someone was at the airport to greet us and take us to their office across the road). It was almost 8:00 by the time we checked in and learned that they stop seating people in the restaurant at 8:00. They had a choice of two daily specials for the free meal and they were pretty good. It was hot so the banana split we got for dessert really hit the spot.

Our rooms were under the restaurant, but since we were there so late and left so early, noise was not a problem. The rooms were clean and comfortable and we were grateful for the A/C. They had parking for our rented car inside the gate, near our room, so we felt it was pretty safe.

We left to go to Tikal at about 5:15AM so we didn't eat breakfast at the motel, but we had stopped at the "Max Bodega" grocery store near the airport on our way in and picked up a few things for breakfast that we ate on the way to Tikal. We did order box lunches from the Don David to take with us and they were ready for pick up at 5:00AM. In retrospect, it probably would have been better to just buy something to make lunch from while we were at the Max Bodega.

One thing that we didn't realize was that although the park opens at 6:00AM, the gate is 17km from Tikal so we ended up waiting at the gate about 20 minutes until it opened. We could have slept in a little longer! We had hoped to see the sunrise from inside the park, but it's not possible to get there and walk to a temple before it gets light if you don't stay in the park. It was foggy when we got there and we actually did see the sun poke through the fog for the first time after it had burned off - probably about 8:00AM which turned out to be just fine.

We were really glad that we had a rented car so that we weren't tied to the schedule of the shuttles and were able to linger in the park as long as we wanted. We stopped by the Don David on our way back through El Remate just so we could walk around the grounds and see what it looked like in the daylight. The grounds were very nice and worth a visit in the light.

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled with family
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Thank lbkm
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 11, 2009

El Remate is a pretty great place to stay to be close to Tikkal. The hotel was decent, the rooms were clean and had hot water, although they were very basic. What was lacking in this hotel was a bulletin board at the reception, to help with trip planning and reserving private tours, especially for travelers traveling alone or in twos or threes. The dinner specials were good, but the portion sizes seemed more suited for a young child rather than an adult. Breakfasts were okay, but very poor value for money (almost a dollar for a refill on a mediocre cup of coffee!)

Overall I think this isn't a bad place to stay at, but they could do much better by making small changes at their hotel.

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Natster09
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2009

All the guidebooks we looked at recommended this place, so we said hey why not.

Pros: Beautiful hotel in great landscape. Right next the lake. Landscaped beautifully. The sunset is incredible.
You get a free meal each day. A/C. Warm shower. The staff is also very helpful and can take care of all you travel needs: transportation, tours, etc.

Cons: The rooms. Mosquitoes. We got eaten alive. Perhaps a mosquito candle or some repellent, or a net would have been nice. Also whatever laundry method they use does not work. The towels smelled gross and the sheets feel disgusting.

Overall the location is very convenient for Tikal and other sites. For the price though, I feel the quality of the rooms could have been better, especially when compared to Flores. But if your not concerned about that, otherwise i think the hotel is great. The staff is incredibly helpful and attentive.

  • Stayed: January 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank mft9417
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2009

La Casa de Don David in El Remate, Guatemala www.lacasadedondavid.com was our 2nd destination as part of a 13 day visit in Belize and Guatemala. My family of 4 (teenage daughter of 13 and 19 year old son) stayed at La Casa de Don David for 3 nights while visiting Tikal. The hotel was clean and comfortable. The restaurant food and staff were great. Tikal is only 30 minutes drive if you have your own car. Both Mr David and his wife Rosita were gracious hosts and a weath of helpful information. One day we took the 30 minute drive to Flores and walked around the small town an bought a few souvenirs. From El Remate we returned to the Belize City airport to return the rental car and headed to Caye Caulker. If you would like to see where else we stayed, check out Tripadvisor (La Casa de Don David Hotel in El Remate, Guatemala and Maxhapan Cabanas on Caye Caulker, Belize).

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled with family
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Thank Whitney S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 29, 2008

This was an amazing find. We used Casa de Don David as a base for 5 nights and went out each day. Only 20 minutes from Tikal on the collectivo (and yes, on one return trip , we had the female contingency of a family (Grandma, Daughter, & granddaughter on- board all holding beautifully colored and very much alive chickens ). The locations is beautiful, overlooking a point on the lake where each morning you could view children swimming and playing while their mothers do laundry, and nearby handsome horses are feeding. (It was incredibly picturesque, truly right out of National Geographic.) Our room was kept immaculate with fresh towels each day. All types of useful information is posted about site and nature tours, guides , boat rides and more. Everyone was very helpful and kind. David is on site and he is a wealth of information about the area historic and present.The food in the restaurant was delicious and healthy, with many vegetarian choices ( We opted to eat dinners here as well as breakfast because the food was so good as well as being reasonably priced.) I hope to return to the area again, and will definitely stay at Case de Don David.

  • Stayed: November 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank LovetoTravekwell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 29, 2008

We stayed at La Casa de Don David for 2 nights primarily to visit Yaxha. We came directly from Tikal Inn where we had had a wonderful time in Tikal National Park.
Pros: We stayed in room #13 which was one of the furthest away from the main road. We didn't hear any road noise. If you book through their web site you can actually pick out your room ahead of time. We thought the room was fine, and very clean - it had 2 Queens and was spacious enough for the three of us. Our porch looked out onto the large gardens - nice place to chill out. We had 2 breakfasts and 2 dinners at the hotel; the breakfasts were very good, the dinners adequate. The front desk staff were extremely helpful. They arranged a guided trip to Yaxha for us, and also booked our seats on the bus to Belize City. We enjoyed strolling around the charming village of El Remate in the evening. No, there isn't any night life but we were fine with that.
Cons: Our room had an air conditioning unit but it didn't seem to work that efficiently. Our room at the Tikal Inn had felt much cooler, even without an air conditioner. We're glad we stayed at Tikal Inn to visit Tikal National Park. El Remate is still quite a distance away from the park - not a lot nearer than Flores. We never visited Flores so I can't say whether El Remate is better than Flores. However, La Casa de Don David is a perfectly fine place to stay and you will be well looked after.

  • Stayed: July 2008, traveled with family
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Thank julianne24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about La Casa De Don David

Address: Route to Tikal | in Downtown, El Remate 17022, Guatemala
Location: Guatemala > Peten Department > El Remate
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 12 B&Bs / Inns in El Remate
Price Range: $42 - $91 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located just 15 min. From the entrance to Tikal, we welcome you to our little piece of paradise. Don David, Yohana Rodas (Administrator)and staff have lots of helpful information, services and tours. The hotel has 13 rooms with private bath, hot water shower, fan or A/C with one meal included (breakfast)and free limited WiFi in the restaurant, and a guest computer also available. Bottled water is free to our guests. Enjoy typical Guatemalan and international meals in the restaurant from 6:30 am to 9 pm overlooking Lake Peten Itza. Our recently added Maya Garden Fire Show is unique and special featuring the largest Maya fire ring in the world. Relax in a hammock on your varanda or in our Gazebo or view the sunset or birds, from our observation deck, featuring the Toucan Express - a 200m zip line providing drink service to the deck. Learn about exotic fruit and plants in our large botanical garden and walk around of the Mayan Sacred Tree (la Ceiba) circle showing the four cardinal directions. On event nights feature the 266 meter ring of fire show for all groups staying two nights or more in the large Maya garden. We will try our best to make your stay pleasant! ... more   less 
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