We arrived in Zihua after a horrible overnight bus ride at about 6:30 in the morning; needless to say we were exhausted. We were not surprised that the room we had reserved at the partner hotel across the street (Casa Sun and Moon) was not yet available, but the friendly staff gave us access to a place to change clothes and leave our bags while we went to see the beach. We were also offered access to the public areas of the hotel, including some hammocks and sofas where we were able to take a brief nap.
At around 10am, a member of the staff told us that our room had not yet been vacated, but there were a couple other rooms available in both the Casa Sun and Moon and across the street at the ZihuaCaracol if we wanted to take a look and get settled into a room to rest. One of the offers was a room with similar amenities for no extra charge at the ZihuaCaracol, with an outdoor balcony/kitchenette, which we accepted. It was perfectly comfortable and clean with air conditioning (Zihua is hot and humid), though it could have used a little maintenance.
The first night and morning we did not have hot water. But following bathing that first morning we mentioned it at the front desk and by that evening we had hot water. There was also an incident that first night where apparently a false alarm was reported to local police, and some security guys (not totally sure if they were police or military) came around with flashlights knocking on all the doors at 5am to confirm that everyone was all right, though it was still a bit of a startling experience to have armed security knock on your door at 5am. We were told that the following nights there would be an extra security guard on-staff at the hotel, which we confirmed.
Despite these two experiences, for the value (we payed a bit under $100USD per night) I have no complaints about the establishment or the staff. I speak Spanish (which surely helps) but they were friendly and resolved both of the issues mentioned above in an appropriate and timely manner.
Amenities: Rooms have air conditioning and a small refrigerator. There is a nice swimming pool that gets a lot of use, especially by families. I can't comment on the breakfast (we never ate at the hotel, and had a kitchenette to save some money), but the coffee was good. And they have what looks to be a good bar and grill, but it is only open during high tourist season (Nov-April), so I can't comment on that either.
Location: The location is really good. It is on Playa Madera right in the middle between the city center and Playa La Ropa. It is a relatively short but hilly walk to Playa La Ropa (easily the nicest beach in Zihua Bay) and also a short walk into the city center. In the same general area there are a number of restaurants...try the seafood posole at Casa Vieja. There is access to Playa Madera during the day through the companion hotel across the street (Casa Sun and Moon), or a block away there is a public access to the beach at all hours.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Hotel ZihuaCaracol is located over the beach La Madera amidst other hotels and restaurants. One hundred yards from the beach and a ten minute walk into quaint Zihuatanejo; this is an ideal spot for your vacation in our area. The Hotel ZihuaCaracol is a beautiful pink Mexican colonial inn with three stories of guest rooms. We have a lovely swimming pool in our courtyard, a spacious restaurant and a terrace restaurant for evening dining under the stars. We also have meeting space for private weddings or other affairs. Our entire staff is trained to care for your complete experience and was selected for their gracious and friendly demeanor. ... more less
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