Staying at Hotel Con Corazon just completed an already amazing experience in Granada. It feels more like a home than a hotel. The rooms are maybe on the smaller side, but there is still plenty of space. It felt like a bedroom…even in its decor. There is a lockbox. There is a nice-size and immaculate bathroom. I appreciated that they had a good quality shampoo and shower gel there for us. I didn’t use the A/C all the time but it was nice to have it at night. It is hot in Granada.
The mission of Hotel Con Corazon really permeates the place. All the employees are exceptional people, taking a deep interest in their guests’ happiness. For example, the A/C was leaking in my room. They immediately changed out the bed that had gotten wet. They were really distressed that the workmen scheduled to come at noon actually came at 8 p.m. They were ready to move me but I told them I’d take advantage of their comfy hammocks to read a book and nap, then go out for lunch, then come back for some great drinks at the hotel bar. There is a lovely patio, a nice little pool to cool off in, and a upstairs balcony with more seating. I didn’t carry a computer so didn’t use the WI-FI but there are two computers available for guest use. There are cups and filtered water available around the entire hotel.
I speak fluent Spanish so I really got to know many of the staff members and their stories. Most are studying English and tourism/hotel management. They are optimistic about Granada and themselves. They are also fun and kind. One night as I drank my macua (try this local drink), several staff members gave me “Nicaraguan” lessons, teaching me phrases and words unique to Nicaragua. We were in stitches. Even if you only know a little Spanish, they will enjoy practicing with you. You will notice that the employees seem to come in a little early and stay a little late after their shifts. It is clear they enjoy their job, their guests and their co-workers.
The food is outstanding at the hotel. All food is bought fresh daily. I recommend eating dinner there at least one night. It is excellent. The breakfasts are really filling. I was teasing the staff that there was no gallo pinto (a traditional rice and bean dish) with the eggs. It is Nicaragua after all! The next morning, it was on my plate. Do not be afraid to ask if you want or need something (that is reasonable).
Hotel Con Corazon is on a quiet corner just two blocks from the main plaza and cathedral. From there you can walk to La Calzada, the street has many restaurants with tables out on the street. It is closed to car traffic. I asked for restaurant recommendations in the hotel and they never failed me. I mostly avoided La Calzada since it’s purely foreigners. I kind of headed in other directions.
I cannot recommend this place highly enough. While most guests are from Europe and the US, we all were attracted by Hotel Con Corazon’s mission. When I left the States I didn’t know I’d be coming to Granada. I plan on returning to Granada next year and intend on bringing school supplies, books (in Spanish or bilingual English/Spanish). Pencils, stickers, erasers, anything. The foundation works with many schools and libraries in the area. If you are able to find room in your suitcase, fill it with school supplies and books. Leave them with the Hotel staff. Then go to the market in Masaya and treat yourself!
The staff will also help you find guides. Nicaragua isn’t easy to get around without either a vehicle or a guide. I found guides’ prices very affordable and worth it. Their vast knowledge of the region made the sights I saw even more fun.
Take some time to speak to one of the staff who works with the foundation. They can tell you how you can continue to support the work that they do.
Lastly, I want to specifically thank a few staff members who went out of their way for me: Noemy, Maritza, Angelo, Leo, Chepe, Anelka, Denis and many others. You, as a visitor, really are contributing to Nicaragua just by staying here.
A phrase I learned while in Nicaragua kind of sums up my visit: Hay mas tiempo que vida (there is more time than life). In other words…don’t rush things. Enjoy Granada and Hotel Con Corazon.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel con Corazon is a boutique hotel in Nicaragua. Located in the city, in a colonial building with fifteen rooms, a restaurant, bar, patios and a swimming pool. The hotel offers all the modern comforts a traveler desires. It's a place that feels like a home away from home. But these simple luxuries aren't even what makes this hotel so unique. Your stay helps Nicaraguans build a brighter future, as 100% of our profits are invested in education. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Con Corazon Hotel
- Con Corazon Granada