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Review of Casa Divina Lodge

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Casa Divina Lodge
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Mindo
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 3 February 2010

Casa Divina is a gem! Gorgeous, hand-crafted rooms, fabulous meals, glorious location, great birding and nature, zip-lines, orchid garden, butterfly museum. Mindo is a fabulous location for travel and Casa Divina is THE place to stay. Knowledgeable owners make the stay here very special. My teens loved being here. They devoured the food and fruit juices. My husband and I enjoyed drinking local cocktails before dinner, watching the birds from the dining room and sleeping at tree-top level. Go on a birding trip with Efraim--we saw around 40 birds in a couple of hours including toucans and quetzals.

I would go back here in a heartbeat. This was the highlight of our trip!

  • Stayed: January 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank Lorie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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183 - 189 of 219 reviews

Reviewed 22 January 2010

Casa Divina is top-shelf hospitality, worth every penny! We had two nights and wished we could stay a week. I slept deeper than I ever have, in the plush beds in the well-appointed cabins tucked tastefully into nooks carved out of the forest. Hot showers with great water pressure.

The included breakfasts and dinners were home-made and delicious; a highpoint was the owner's mother's apple walnut cake for dessert.

A bevy of eco-tour options abound in Mindo and the owners' happily helped us set up a birdwatching tour, on which I realized my life-long dream of seeing the elusive Quetzal bird.

Mindo is a magical place, and Casa Divina is the perfect choice for all-inclusive lodging.

I heartily recommend without any reservations (you however, might want to make reservations, as they ight

  • Stayed: January 2010, travelled with family
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Thank erinelizabethusa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 January 2010

We had a fantastic time in this natural paradise. Great from all angles - beautiful cabins, amazing nature, fantastic food and true hospitality!

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled with family
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Thank E_Jel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 December 2009

Casa Divina is a splendid small and personal retreat. It is luxurious in the truest sense of the word to me. It does not have television or a spa (although I believe a spa is planned for the future) but it has what counts - a great room, a very good location and fantastic service. Our huge room had a wall of glass facing into the rainforest, a lovely bathroom and two very comfortable beds. Everything was in rich timber with great attention to detail. We could sit on the balcony and watch birds all day if we wanted to. Mollie and Efrain are the perfect hosts. Efrain took us birdwatching -we had never been before - and found amazing birds for us to view and photograph through his telescope. He has an wonderful knowledge of the birds, the history of the area and the culture. Molly is a great cook and we had all of our meals there. I left some belongings behind and Molly knew we were going to be staying in Quito the next day so she arranged for the local bus to bring them to Quito for us. Nothing was too much trouble for them and they both seem to genuinely enjoy what they do.

If you go, be sure to take the 'Cock of the Rock' excursion. You will see an amazing bird and more importantly, wander through a pristine forest with a plethora of birds and epiphytes.

  • Stayed: December 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank oliverAustralia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 September 2009

I enjoyed my two night stay at Casa Divina, although not being a serious bird watcher I did not find Mindo especially interesting compared with some other places in Ecuador. The lodge is very nicely appointed and the food is pretty good, perhaps a bit expensive for a solo traveller, since I had an entire cabin to myself.

Stayed: September 2009, travelled solo
2  Thank Londinense
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 August 2009

Our two night stay at Casa Divina was excellent in every way. Co-owner Efrain, a suberb naturalist and birder, and a driver picked us up at our hotel in Quito, and we spent the day hiking, enjoying the beautiful scenery and taking photographs of birds and the mountain vistas en route to the lodge. What a surprise! The lodge and chalets are built from local woods by Efrain and helpers and are private and luxurious...comfortable beds, balcony with rocking chair and hammock, large bathtub/shower with tile and stonework, plenty of hot water,.. all immaculately clean. Co-owner Molly prepares gourmet meals that she serves at hand-made family style tables in the large all-purpose room in the lodge . Since our return home, both Molly and Efrain have responded to e-mails promptly idenifying bird photographs. It's a perfect place for a Mindo holiday.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank CaliforniaGen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 August 2009

My husband and I travelled with my brother and his wife to a lovely spot off the beaten path. The lodge was hand built by Efra, the owner and the luxurous amenities in the cabins are such a surprise! Spacious bathrooms with endlesss hot water, a porch with rocker and hammock add to the beautiful hand crafted woodwork throughout the main house and cabins. Efra is a knowledgeable and amiable guide for outings to the many attractions in the lovely town of Mindo especially the "Cock of the Rock" concert! The warm atmosphere and wonderful meals that Efra's wife Molly creates really set Casa Divina apart. She brings her San Francisco Bay Area dining and service roots to this beautiful location they have nestled in the jungle with a careful eye on sustaining and preserving the environment. The main house is comfortable and welcoming with their two lovely daughters who will tell you in English or Spanish about the birds, the orchids, the butterflies, the zip line or the waterfall. There was a puzzle in the main house calling for my help. It was really nice to have filtered water, coffee and tea all day included. If you want an adventure, Efra can arrange it or just relax and walk to the butterfly farm. The transportation arranged to Quito was comfortable reasonable and pleasant. We plan to go back again.

  • Stayed: July 2009, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank KFBMCB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Casa Divina Lodge

Address: 1.2km Via a la Cascada Nambillo | Pichincha, Mindo, Ecuador
Phone Number:
Region: Ecuador > Pichincha Province > Mindo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Mindo
Price Range: £150 - £241 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Casa Divina Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Casa Divina Lodge is located 1.2 km (3/4 mi.) outside the town of Mindo in the western lowlands of the Pichincha Province in Ecuador, South America. About 2 hours northwest of Quito, the valley of Mindo forms part of a larger biodiversity hotspot known as the Andean Choco Region. We are proud to offer comfortable and elegant accommodation in the middle of the cloudforest. The town of Mindo offers many activities for the outdoor, nature-seeking traveler. World class birdwatching is at its best in and around the Mindo area. Please inquire about birdwatching packages and personalized tours.At Casa Divina Lodge we provide delicious home-style meals and comfortable accommodations for those who want an adventure by day and an elegant and cozy place to rest by night. As well as an experienced bird guide, Efrain, owner and builder, is a talented carpenter and has demonstrated his love for wood in each of the hand-built cabins as well as almost all of the wooden furniture in the lodge. We are a family-run business that holds high standards in service to our guests and also towards our employees. We value those that work with us greatly. We are proud to have a dedicated staff that is happy to be here and has been with us for an extended period, making the atmosphere here that much more warm and family-oriented.We welcome families that travel together, as well as guests with young children. We have two children and know what a great opportunity and advantage it is for children to experience a broader sense of the world through travel. We run a small capacity lodge on a private nature reserve, so whether you are dedicated birdwatchers, honeymooners or a traveling family Casa Divina Lodge offers the perfect cloudforest experience.We support community tourism by working with other family-run businesses in the area. We encourage our guests to get out and experience the variety of activities available in the region. For the adventure seekers there is zip lining through the trees, tubing down the Mindo River and rappelling down one of many local waterfalls. Delight your sweet tooth on a rainy afternoon at the local chocolate factory. For nature lovers there is a morning at the butterfly farm, a tour at the orchid garden and the after dinner night hike. For avid bird watchers you can't miss the cock-of-the-rock lek, a visit to the Paz de Las Aves Reserve and humming bird observation.But you won't want to spend all of your time out of doors. Casa Divina is a place where life slows down. A place where you are invited to relax on the sofa with a good book, or in your hammock for a refreshing siesta.Our meals are a healthy blend of traditional Ecuadorian and international fare. And don't forget the desserts. Each evening a unique sweet inspiration is served from the ovens of the Sweet Goddess Bakery. For those who can't get enough of our cooking (or just want to stay in for the day) we offer lunch, snacks, drinks and-of course-coffee and tea all day long. Unlimited filtered drinking water is also available in your room as well as in the main house.Mindo is a small town located in the Ecuadorian western lowlands (more commonly know as cloud forest) where so many ideals come together: the climate is just right (the nickname for this valley is "the land of eternal spring"), the biodiversity will make even the most amateur nature seeker giddy with excitement, malaria does not exist here (no pills, no side effects), and the community is conscientious and moving ahead in the eco-tourism movement. You will see informative signs posted throughout town about the effects of pollution and all households and businesses separate our waste into organic and non-organic bins. The young people from Mindo are proud of their town, their work and the opportunity to have an international experience in a small rural town.Although Mindo still has a long way to go in its development as an "eco-destination," change and progress are happening and it's exciting to be part of the process. We invite you to come and kick up your heels at Casa Divina Lodge and participate in community tourism in the making. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Casa Divina Cloudforest Retreat Hotel Mindo

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