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“The horses are friendly and the ice cream is chock-full of coconut.” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of La Hacienda Hostel Ranch

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La Hacienda Hostel Ranch
New York, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“The horses are friendly and the ice cream is chock-full of coconut.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 June 2009

We stayed with Karin and Ron at La Hacienda (a lovely house on a hill a short walk from La Rancheta) for about a week and a half in late March, 2009. It was a family excursion - 6 people, ages ranging from 50-something to 11. We rented 3 rooms at 25 Euro per room per night, which was quite a good deal. We were immediately charmed by our hosts, who were warm & inviting, and at the same time respectful of our privacy. The atmosphere was not at all formal; Ron & Karin both allowed themselves to be cornered and questioned about life in their adopted country (even when en route to pressing obligations like feeding their horses), and they were relaxed enough with us to correct us, gently, when we were too cavalier with the water (which, being rainwater, is very precious, especially in the dry season). This is part of what is so appealing about staying at La Rancheta/La Hacienda - it is an opportunity to experience a different mode of living, with an entirely different set of constraints (and pleasures) than those you are probably accustomed to. Yes, there is no hot water, but it is always warm outside, so you don't miss it (the water is room temperature, though, not uncomfortable). There are a few mosquitoes - but there are also birds, horses, dogs, and a lovely ocean view. We really enjoyed eating breakfast on the veranda and then strolling down the hill to the beautiful Las Galeras beach for a swim and a cigar. When we wanted to get a little further afield, Karin and Ron gave us a lot of helpful advice. For example, because Karin told us what we should be willing to pay for a boat trip to Playa Fronton, we were able to knock 1500 pesos off the price the guide initially offered us. La Rancheta is very well located, by the way, for seeing some of the most stunning beaches on the North Coast (e.g., Playa Rincon, Playa Fronton, Playa Madama). Also, if the season is right, you can see whales off of some of these beaches - we did. Finally, the all-day horseback excursion that we took with Karin was grand. Karin is a very knowledgable and engaging guide, and the young Dominican fellows who work with her are great. If you don't do anything else, take one of these excursions. You'll see some lovely trails, a gorgeous beach, meet some interesting folks, see a working Dominican farm, explore a cave, and dine on fresh coconut. Very nice! If any of this sounds appealing to you, I think you will have a very nice time at La Hacienda. We certainly hope to return some day.

  • Stayed April 2009, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank EstoyCaminando
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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65 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (10)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Vianen, The Netherlands
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 April 2009

On our travel through the caribbean with our kids (2 and 4 years old) we found a very warm welcome in La Rancheta. We stayed for 2 weeks in the bungalow. Set in a beautiful garden, where you can find fresh fruits to accomplish your breakfast.
In the middle of the garden their is a small restaurant where Pierre makes you a very nice meal.
The bungalow is simple but very cozy. Only the stairs should better be replaced if you travel with young children (above the cooking plate and very steep). The veranda is gorgeous.

We had a wonderful time and the owners/managers are extremely friendly. They told us a lot about the environment and the people living their. A great way to get to know the Dominican republique

  • Stayed January 2009, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank MyraV
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Carrboro, NC
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 March 2009

We (a mid-20's couple) stayed at La Rancheta for four nights. After a motoconcho ride from town, we were immediately thrilled to see the beautifully painted rooms at La Rancheta and the rustic outdoor kitchen. The rooms are just the right size, with shelves to unpack your bags and stay awhile. The bathroom is not large, but is big enough for two people. Please note that there is no hot water in Las Galeras because it is all collected rainwater, but this is not a problem if you shower while the sun is up. In fact, it is quite refreshing.

We used our kitchen two nights and found it to be quite relaxing to cook in the open air outside our room. Pierre (the chef) can provide as much purified water as you need for drinking or otherwise, so make sure to take bottles to fill for your days on the beach or on horseback. At La Rancheta's restaurant, Pierre is great at coming up with inventive dishes, but do give him a day's notice so that he can pick up special ingredients in town.

Karin is an expert with her horses and ensures that even beginners have an excellent time trekking through forested trails en route to breathtaking beaches, cliffs, caves, and farms. I would highly recommend a horseback ride with Karin -- you won't be disappointed. When we left La Rancheta, it was if we were leaving our home. La Rancheta is peaceful, the town/beaches are beautiful, and the pace of life is calming. We will definitely return to La Rancheta when possible.

  • Stayed March 2009, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank beubanks23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Minneapolis
Level Contributor
43 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 April 2008

For those of you who love small guest houses, rustic charm, eating dinner with people from half-way around the world, and an accomodation off the beaten path, La Rancheta is just such a place. Owned by Karen and Ron, both Belgian, and run by Isabelle and Pierre, both French, La Rancheta has some of the most friendly and helpful staff you can find. I stayed in the "apartment," which was more like a room with a bath tucked in the corner. No A/C here, just ceiling and oscillating fans; no warm water for showers either. The rooms are charming but slightly dark, the bed comfortable, the bathrooms cramped. I had my own veranda with a table/chairs, a stove, sink, and fridge...a great place to read a book and ease into the day. They provide an unlimited supply of purified water, so be sure to bring some bottles with you. The accomodations are tucked into lush foliage, just a dirt path trot away from the palapa, where breakfast and dinner are served if you should desire. The morning coffee will leave you levitating and spoiled, and so will Pierre's pizzas, shrimp, and rum concoctions. The lobster and pasta didn't measure up, but easy come, easy go. Guests are typically European, so polish up on your French or Flemish prior to coming. Or just punt, like I did. While Lonely Planet makes this place seem like it is way out of the town of Las Galeras, it only takes a 20 minute walk on a safe and mellow road in the day, or a 2 minute motoconcho ride (for $1) at night. Take the opportunity to go on a guided horseback ride to Playa Fronton (Karen owns the horses), where you will learn a great deal about the plant life and agricultural practices of the locals. William was my guide, one of the most tremendous Dominican men on the island. An advantage to staying at La Rancheta is that you are closer to Playa Fronton and Playa Madame, both beaches only accessible by foot or boat. Overall, a very mellow and sweet bunch, affordable, and opportunely located outside of the more noisey town. Buy yourself some rum, Coke, and limes at the town store and kick back at La Rancheta. You won't regret it!

  • Liked — Staff and location
  • Disliked — Dark rooms, cramped bathroom
  • Stayed April 2008, travelled solo
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Check-in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank trufflesque
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
rik3, owner at La Hacienda Hostel Ranch, responded to this review, 8 June 2008
Hello

Thank you for the review. We did some work at "La Rancheta" , the light in the bathroom of the rooms (also the room where you stayed in) is replaced, the bench is repainted and the dirt pad is now a nice pad with tiles. We keep the sun out of the rooms because of the heet.. Also new : we offer cheap rooms for longer stays. Hope to see you again some day.

Regards
Karin, Ronald , Pierre, Isabelle & William
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about La Hacienda Hostel Ranch

Property: La Hacienda Hostel Ranch
Address: Calle al Faro, Las Galeras 32000, Dominican Republic (Formerly La Rancheta & La Hacienda Hostel)
Region: Caribbean > Dominican Republic > Samana Province > Las Galeras
Amenities:
Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 20 Speciality Lodging in Las Galeras
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 4
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
La Hacienda Hostel Ranch Samana, Dominican Republic

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