Jose and Sandrita were such warm and helpful hosts. They've lived in Isabella nearly 30 years, and are knowledgeable about the town and the sites to visit. This hotel isn't super stylish, but everything is new and nicely finished. Jose does woodwork on the side, and I love the exposed wood cielings in the rooms. There's a terrace on the roof for a neighborhood view, and although its about 3 blocks away from the beach and you can't see it from the hotel, this place is a great stay and very affordable (we spent $25/person/night in June 2012, including breakfast, $20/person without breakfast).
Jose kindly met us at the port when our boat arrived from Santa Cruz in a taxi, although we didn't realize taxis cost $1/person on Isabella instead of $1/trip. No big deal. Without rushing, Jose kindly helped us decide how we could spend our short stay of 2 days, 3 nights. He explained the options in Spanish (limited English, but he does speak a few words to get you on your way to english speaking guides). He then arranged everything for us, so we didn't have to spend any time checking into the different spots. We had already spent so much time doing this on Santa Cruz, without finding any good vibes. To the contrary, Jose and Sandrita welcomed us warmly, showed us our clean and comfortable rooms, then discussed the future day's plans. They also suggested a great restaurant, Los Delfines (although, we ate the first night at La Tortuga Pepinera which was delicious, small and much fewer tourists.) All of our site visits were great for the following three days, and we paid directly to Jose instead of to the tourist operators, which we liked because it made it easier for our group of 4 people to account for all our expenses at one time, on our last day.
The hotel rooms are new, with huge windows - although they don't all have screens on them, they do have air conditioning. Most rooms have two beds in them. My husband and I were traveling with two friends, and each couple took a room. Ours had a queen and a single, theirs had two singles. Both rooms had small refrigerators in them, lamps, side tables, tv's, a closet and an ample bathroom. The bathrooms are clean, medium sized and new. The cielings are super high, which we loved because the heat rises up and out of your breeze. They provide fresh sheets daily and two fresh towels per person daily, and the room was always spotlessly clean upon our return from outings. I only saw one mosquito in there the whole 3 night stay, and it didn't bite me! Otherwise, no bugs, but there were a few teeny weeny ants near a window. Still the place is super clean. The dining room downstairs is a covered patio, with a nice ambiance. Sandrita prepared breakfast for an additional $5/person, which was average in flavor with typical contents of an Ecuadorian breakfast (toasted white bread, jam, scrambled eggs with ham in them, fruit salad, fruit yogurt, granola, freshly made juice, and Nescafe - although we brought our own fresh-ground coffee and Sandrita prepared it for us. It was a balanced breakfast with lots of choices and prepared freshly for our arrival every morning.
I also like that the hotel is not right on the malecon with all the other hotels and restaurants. Instead its a block and a half away, just far enough to feel like you get to see a bit more of the local neighborhood. Considering that Isabella is so small, its great to visit a Galapagueño town that isn't crawling with tourist shops, so I highly recommend Hotel Sandrita's hospitality!
- Also Known As:
- Hotel Sandrita Galapagos Islands/Isabela - Puerto Villamil