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Reviewed 30 January 2017

This place was the best we stayed at during 3 weeks in Ecuador. The reasons were:

Location: it's secluded, a 10 min car ride over a bumpy road and several large streams from Mindo. This is an advantage as Mindo looks to be becoming a bit of a tourist trap with tour agencies fighting for space with burger and pizza joints.

It has two paths on it's property, one that leads to a waterfall and the other to Mindo river. Both are short tranquil walks which took up half a day each for us, simply taking our time to watch the wildlife. The house has wellington boots to lend for muddy days.

If you sit on the main balcony during the early morning you'll see a plethora of bird life, from parrots to motmots to egrets and humming birds, which fly right up to the building to feed on the provided for sweetened water.

Food made by the cook, Carmen: Excellent value (12 USD for a large two course meal including a drink) and really top quality, healthy stuff, like grilled trout or excellent quality grilled meats. Deserts were outstanding, especially coffee & lime pie.

Service provided by Sabina: she takes care of the place like it is her home, always ready to help suggest activities (e.g. an excellent evening walk in the forest near Mindo to look for night time insects and reptiles, where we also saw wild armadillos) and makes you feel totally looked after.

The only downside was the very small bedroom at the top of the main building, but it was comfortable and we slept well, and there is so much to see in the cloud forest that we didn't spend any time there other than to sleep. If you need more space, they also rent out two seperate "famaily" sized buildings in the grounds.

The main building also has great balcony spaces, one with a hammock, to sit and relax on, and books about the local wildlife, table games and Ecuador travel guides.

When we stayed in mid-January the place was literally empty of other guests apart from on the weekend.

  • Stayed: January 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Kotinka
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 October 2016 via mobile

What a gem! We booked this for a weekend getaway from Quito, it was fantastic. A real ecolodge with fantastic service and beautiful surroundings. We saw more nature here than anywhere else we went in Mindo - hummingbirds, butterflies, baby toucans everywhere.
I would highly recommend a stay here, it's a 10minute walk down to the river (which you can have a dip in), the pool is refreshing- as is the steam room. There's also a centre to practise yoga as well. Carmen and Carlos were extremely helpful, booking tours, taxis to Mindo, and Carmen's cooking was great... (as were the multiple deserts she made!)

Stayed: October 2016, travelled with friends
1  Thank Rachel T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 October 2016

Mindo's location in the Ecuadorian cloud forest is beautiful, with gorgeous flowers and lots of wildlife (especially birds such as hummingbirds). The location of this hotel is quite remote even from Mindo, as you have to travel a 7-km dirt road to get to it, which includes crossing 5 streams, something I wouldn't attempt in the rainy season. However, if you don't mind the trip, it's very quiet and peaceful there. The staff are extremely helpful and accommodating, and the food was delicious, which is a good thing since there's nowhere else to eat. Breakfast was included, lunch and dinner were extra. The rooms are small but clean. The mosquito netting over the beds is annoying but does help to keep out the mosquitos. When we were there, there was only one other couple when we arrived, and then a family of three arrived the next day. So it's not a busy place, but that's the way we like it. We were only there for one full day and didn't do much hiking since we are older and not able. But we enjoyed just walking around and relaxing.

  • Stayed: September 2016, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Marjorie C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 June 2016 via mobile

Stayed here with my family of 5 for one night. Very impressed with the cleanliness and beauty of the facility. Mauricio greeted us in person even though we arrived very much later than expected (so easy to get lost in Quito). Our room was beautiful and comfortable. Breakfast the next day was made to order (best coffee we had in Ecuador ) and Mauricio made sure we had very goood directions to Mompiche (our next stop) even giving us hints about how to avoid the worst of the devastation feom the earthquake. All in all a great place to stay!

Stayed: June 2016, travelled with family
Thank Kathleen P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 June 2016

I was here quite recently and had a terrible experience even though I had heard very good things. Judging by the booking reviews I saw I do not understand how this hotel has such great reviews.

1. Pool is freezing, no way you can comfortably enjoy it. Might as well swim in the river if you enjoy such cold water.
2. There is no spa, there is a sauna but nothing else. One with no lighting.
3. Extremelly far from anything. It is about 7 km away from the town. The road is in terrible condition. I would not want to go there without a 4x4, We had to cross 2 streams and two rivers in the car in order to get to this location. No previous warning. In anything without a 4 wheel drive we would have not made it.
4. "Dog friendly" at this property is: tie your dog wherever you want or let him loose and hope he does not escape to the jungle or gets stolen. Given the property has no fencing or security it can be a risk. Specially considering people walk through the property to get to other properties further down the road. If you have a small dog that has never slept outside, well you are out of luck.
5. Parts of the property are in terrible shape, there is a pool/lagoon with a few chairs that is falling apart with no running water in the bathrooms. You have ladders left outside rooms for days. The water smells terrible.
6. The cascade or the 2 inches of running water down the slope is unsafe! We are experienced hikers and we almost did not make it all the way because of the all the fallen objects along the way plus a few mud-slides. Why put your guests at risk?
7. They do not respect the rates that they offer online at any of the sites. They try to bring some made up charges for the holiday that are not mentioned anywhere.
8. We had no running water for most of the second day. What little water we got at night was cold and had no pressure.
9. You can hear absolutely everything!
10. It says the place is eco-friendly but the lights in the empty room next to ours was on for the duration of our stay.

Service by the personnel who work at the property 12 hours a day is fantastic. They offer 5 star quality service.

  • Stayed: May 2016, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
1  Thank Luis C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mauricio A, Propietario at El Abrazo del Arbol, responded to this reviewResponded 3 June 2016
Google Translation

Su comentario tiene toda la intención de hacernos daño. Por qué?
1. La piscina es totalmente natural. Constantemente está entrando agua de la cascada. No tiene cloro ni químicos, lo que la hace más atractiva. No está congelada. Está a la temperatura natural.
2. No ofrecemos SPA ofrecemos baño turco y si tiene luz, solo hay que oprimir el interruptor y tiene rayos de luz natural.
3. No es cierto que tenga que llegar en 4 x 4. llegan automóviles todo el tiempo. En nuestra página web se indica que que hay que pasar riachuelos y que está a 7 km, lo cual es una de nuestras ventajas, ya que está lejos del ruido y la contaminación, tenemos 6 hectáreas de naturaleza plena.
4. Amantes de los animales como somos, nuestro lodge es uno de los pocos que permite que sus huéspedes lleguen con perros. Pueden estar libres dentro de la propiedad con el debido cuidado y respeto por los otros huéspedes. Nunca ha pasado nada malo y el cuidado lógicamente corre por cuenta de sus dueños.
5. Constantemente, damos mantenimiento a nuestras instalciones.
6. Los senderos a la cascada y al río son naturales, no pavimentadas. es normal que en invierno se forme un poco de lodo en algunos sitios. Ofrecemos botas de caucho a nuestros huéspedes. No hay objetos caídos, solo hojas y eventualmente alguna rama de los árboles.
7. Cobramos exactamente, lo que dice en nuestro mail de respuesta o en nuestros botones de reserva. por favor indíquenos su número de factura para probarle que está equivocado.
8. Cuando se presenta algún inconveniente con el agua o con cualquier asunto, si nos comunican, inmediatamente tratamos de solucionarlo.
9. Si, es cierto que se escucha absolutamente todo: los sonidos de la naturaleza, agua, sapos, aves, escuchas hasta el movimiento de los árboles.
10. Si alguna luz se quesó prendida en la habitación siguiente, te hubiéramos agradecido que nos avises para apagarla.

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