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“The ONLY choice in San Juan del Sur”
Review of Casa Del Soul

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Casa Del Soul
Reviewed 16 October 2013

Beautiful, peaceful, quiet and feels like home after you get settled in, it's the only place I would ever choose to stay while in this area of Nicaragua. Everything you'd need and want in a base of operations for your Nicaraguan vacation/adventure/surf trip or whatever. Randy's a dynamite host!

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled solo
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1  Thank scott m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 16 October 2013

Love this place!!! Randy is a great host. The rooms are nice and comfy. Great secluded area. Can't say anything bad about anything. Great pool. Water was perfect. Million dollar view and great service!! Breakfast rocked! I will be back!!

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank Matt G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 October 2013

I like to start by saying I plan to retire in Nicargua after my experience, the view is AMAZing. My wife and I stayed at this lovely place for 4 days and it was excatly what I was looking for, peace and quiet. Randy (the owner) was awesome! He went out of his way to help us and guide us when we were lost, but left us to our own vices. One thing you should know there weren't any air conditioners, but the breeze was so nice you really didn't need AC, there plenty of fans, and when all fells we just jumped in the pool. There was a "guard dog" name chucho, funny thing is my wife is scared of dogs but by day two my wife got use to him basking in the sun with us, and she got over it. The walk down the beach was like something out of a movie we had some great videos of the walk, but if your the type of person that doen't enjoy nature and if you bothered by mosquitos, stay in the house. Chucho the "gaurd dog" turn into our tour guide and protector at we took are walk down the steep hill. Over all one of the best trips I have ever had and I have been to a lot of places.

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Tonio2959
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 October 2013

We just returned from my stay at Casa del Soul in San Juan del Sur. Staying at Casa del Soul was perfect. Everything is clean and comfortable. Randy and Brenda (owners) have a vast knowledge of the country and where able to help us plan town activities and day trips around San Juan. They even have cell phones to loan (for free) so we could make calls while there. Large kitchen with everything to prepare meals. Almost forgot...the views are spectacular!

Room Tip: Get the West room if you can. All are good, but this one is the best.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Alan B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 September 2013

We had a wonderful time during our stay at Casa del Soul. The location cannot be beat, the view is incredible! The surroundings are quiet and very peaceful, creating the perfect atmosphere to relax and unwind. The beach is a short walk away and is great for walks and exploring. It is also close enough to town to enjoy the local restaurants. Yami made us delicious breakfasts every morning and was very nice and sweet. Randy is friendly and accommodating, and really goes out of his way to make sure everyone has a great stay. He gave us great recommendations for places to eat and beaches to visit, even for our trip to Granada. His dog Chucho is very nice and well behaved. We will definitely be back!

Stayed: September 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank JohannahD_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 September 2013

Where do I begin? How about the fact that the owner, Randy, kicked me, my husband, our 3-year-old daughter and 17-month-old son out of his house without warning on the 4th day of our 14 day visit because my daughter accidently peed in his bed.

Randy assured us that families were welcome at Casa Del Soul. My husband corresponded with Randy on numerous occasions over the course of 8 months to discuss the parameters of Casa Del Soul and whether or not it would be a good fit for our family. He assured us numerous times that it would. He said in an email, "When you travel with the kids, you don't want any surprises." He said that they would try to get toys, a highchair, etc. He said that everything was fine and wouldn't be a problem.

During our short stay, the temperature during the day was in the high 80s. The house does not have air-conditioning. (A fact that cannot be under-estimated prior to your visit.) He was upset that we left the windows open during the day. We tried to explain to him that if we didn't, the rooms were 90+ degrees when we came back from the pool. He was upset about us not shutting windows because they were "ruining his curtains." In fact, he worried a lot about his curtains and his window screens which blew out during an overnight wind storm, and very little about our children. Actually, he didn't even acknowledge them. Need I say that that there were no toys or highchair?

My kids played with the toys we brought and Randy's dominoes and "Bananagrams." We tried our best to put them back at the end of the day. After the 3rd day, they put the dominoes on the top shelf out of reach. We tried very hard to be courteous of their things and follow their rules, and there were A LOT of rules. They pressured us to listen to them moments after walking in the door and to nail down our daily schedule immediately. We were pretty laize-faire about our schedule (being on vacation and all) and yet we felt an increasing amount of angst for not doing this. Randy said we weren't "following the rules."

He said the dog "Chucho" was a nice, friendly dog. In reality, he's a "guard dog" who barks throughout the night to protect the house against unwanted people, feral cats... wind. Without our requesting it, they put him away for the time my children were on the premises because the truth is, Chucho is not so great with kids. Randy said he was upset that his "guard dog" couldn't come out.

When Randy told us at 7am that he was kicking us out on the 4th day of our visit, he said he would refund our money for the days that we weren't staying. He offered us places around town that he "already spoke to" but when we got there, no one knew Randy and certainly did not speak to him. When the moment came to give back our money, he shorted us one day. When my husband asked about this he said, "What about my mattress?" A mattress he said he was just going to "air out." In lieu of kicking us out, we offered to pay for the mattress but he refused. When my husband insisted that he give us our full refund, Randy threw $90 at him and walked away. Randy said something about how he was upset that he "rented the house to us for 14 days for only $140 per night" a figure, which he agreed to 8 months in advance.
We found out a day later that the reason our daughter wet the bed was because she had a urinary tract infection. Because we were now w/o all the resources Randy had assured us we'd have, were on our own to find pediatric antibiotics in a town where rarely anyone speaks two words of English. All of this is because Randy left us high and dry for a one wet mattress. Let me clarify, she peed twice. The first time she peed, it was on a bed WITHOUT a plastic cover, (FYI, the beds don't have plastic covers... ew); the second time, was on an extra twin bed WITH the plastic cover. After the 1st incident, we promised Randy she would only sleep on the twin bed with the cover. As I said, we were trying to be courteous, reasonable guests but apparently, that wasn't enough for Randy.

Casa del Soul has, no doubt, a beautiful view. The house is acceptable and comfortable enough. The Nicaraguan staff is courteous, the food-- good (thanks Gord and Yami). The lack of air-conditioning and rules on closing windows is extremely disappointing--but the REAL bottom line is this: Randy lied to us over and over again; he kicked my family out without warning and then tried to cheat us out of money. If you would like to put your vacation into the hands of guy who could potentially kick you out of his house for not shutting windows or for an unforeseen accident, then that's a chance you'll have to take. He will say this has "never happened before" but it happened to us; and once is quite enough.


In our experience, we found Randy to be an extremely untrustworthy person, although he did talk a good game. Personally, someone who'd look at a 3-year-old, and a 17-month-old, and throw them out without batting an eyelash onto streets of a developing country, isn't someone I would support with my dollars.

I'm positive he will try to deny all this for the sake of his "reputation" on sites like this one. Our hope is that this site will not filter this review for the sake of his paid listing because our intention is that no one has to experience what we went through. I will include all the photographic proof in the pictures attached to this review. If anyone would like to see the paperwork, we'd be happy to provide it. We hope no one else gets blind-sided on their vacation like we did by putting their trust in this snake-oil sales because there are many other wonderuful places to stay in San Juan del Sur.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank Shelka78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Randyman54, Owner at Casa Del Soul, responded to this reviewResponded 11 September 2013

Randyman54, Owner at Casa Del Soul, responded to this review
September 6, 2013
This review was taken off once by TripAdvisor. I have over 217 reviews since I opened in 2008 and "Casa Del Soul" has been Rated # 1 the whole time. This is the only review she has ever written. This review is all lies and doesn't even deserve a "response" from me. But for all my past guests and future guests,they need to know that I treat all guests with respect and would never "throw anyone out ". There was issues with this guest and this was not working with them staying here. The night before I set them at a beautiful place that my friend is the manager and a condo owner there. We took the husband over in the morning to check out this place to make sure he liked everything and that it would be a good fit for his family. He spent 1-2 hours there and when he was finalizing everything there,I went to the bank and gave him all his money back in cash and then my manager took him back to "Casa Del Soul" around 11am to get the family and load up everything and take them to check in. She decided to eat lunch first and then decided to take a nap with the kids while we all waited to take them and all their luggage to the new place. It was 2pm before they left. I found them a great place and got them a big discount. No one was "thrown out on the street" and everyone speaks great English at this place and there was a free shuttle there to take guests to town or the store.There left in very good hands..Thank you,Randy
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Reviewed 4 September 2013 via mobile

This is really a Hostel. The owner lives on the top floor
Casa del Soul is located very nicely on the side if the mountain The view is spectacular and I really enjoy the howler monkeys in the trees
The place is a bit hard to find but once you get there your fine
There is no air conditioning so plan what month you would like to stay here carefully. In addition since you are isolated there is not a staff here for service. You will have to drive back into town or call a taxi. Breakfast is the only meal served here.
The owner is friendly and I didn't have an issue with the dog. Some say that it's really a guard dog and maybe so but he didn't even bark when I entered the building at night.
I think the price is a little high but if you want an isolated private stay this is a good place for that.

  • Stayed: September 2013
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Thank Estoywilliam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Randyman54, Owner at Casa Del Soul, responded to this reviewResponded 6 September 2013

Thank you for staying here. We are not a hotel or a hostel..We are listed as "Specialty Lodging" on TripsAdvisor.Casa Del Soul" is an 4,000 sq ft.Oceanfront Luxury Home / B & B. You rent it as a house or just rent 1 room at a time. We serve an excellent breakfast very morning as you will see in lot of the reviews. My staff comes in from 7:15 - 3:15pm . There is a "Fully Equipped" kitchen with everything you can think of if you want to make your own lunches or dinners. Every room has a refrigerator besides the refrigerator in the kitchen for the guests to use. There is also a anew BBQ for the guests to use (or not use). I give all the guests a cellphone to make going to town very easy. It is about 6-7 minutes away. We have a great chef named Fabiola that a lot of guests use to come in a cook meals. Me and my wife live on the 3rd floor in our own apartment which is separate from the 3 bedroom house the guests use. There are a lot of hostels in town,shared rooms,shared bathrooms and this is something we are not. Thanks, randy

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Additional Information about Casa Del Soul

Address: Pacific Marlin N 34, San Juan del Sur 99513, Nicaragua
Region: Nicaragua > Rivas Department > San Juan del Sur
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 73 Speciality Lodging in San Juan del Sur
Price Range: £71 - £100 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Casa Del Soul is an oceanfront, luxury 4,000 sq. ft. home. It is situated on Nacascolo Bay, 5 minutes from San Juan Del Sur. It has a large outdoor deck surrounding a 4 by 9 meter swimming pool. The big balcony off the 2nd floor bedrooms give it a commanding view of the ocean and the tropical forest. Cable TV, DVD, ipod music systems, refrigerator, coffee makers make your room very comfortable. A full breakfast is included. We give cell phones to our guests and I help you do anything you want to in Nicaragua. Transportation,tours,volcanos,surfing,fishing,shopping, REAL ESTATE, ATV's,zipline,horseback riding,etc... ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Casa Del Soul Hotel San Juan Del Sur

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