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Reviewed 3 April 2018

My wife and I spent 3 nights at Laguna Lodge as part of a week long adventure in Guatemala that the lodge played a key role in helping us arrange. We booked a modified version of their 'mayan experience' package, shortening the trip and refocusing everything on Antigua, Tikal and Lake Atitlán specifically.

I worked with them 100% through email, never actually speaking to anyone, many months in advance, and then paying for everything through paypal. Even as someone who works in technology it was a little bit of an unnerving experience. Here's the thing -- everything went according to plan. It was actually quite amazing. We'd get off a plane, boat or van and there'd be someone waiting to whisk us away. Everything was like clockwork and it was an AMAZING trip. We felt like we had the best hotel accommodations (La Lancha near Tikal is unbelievable) and the best tour guides (Carlos Vivar @ Titkal!) every where we went. At no point did we feel confused about where to go and at no point did we feel unsafe while in Guatemala.

The lodge itself is a unique and creative space. The views are out of this world and the food is excellent. My wife and I greatly appreciate the dedication and focus on sustainability. I really don't feel that we made many, or any, compromises by staying at an 'eco-lodge.'

We also grabbed a massage the night before we left, and it was fantastic. We would have probably gotten one earlier but honestly, we didn't even think of it. I'm not sure if we even realized they had a spa.

And that's kinda the minor downside at Laguna. There's some rough edges around service that could be easily fixed. When we checked in, it'd be beneficial to the hotel to let guests know what services are available. When we're sitting out on the dock, staff could totally hit us up for drink orders and increase our spend (and save us the trip to the bar). Little hospitality details here and there that you might find at high end hotels are missing. All minor and all likely a mere training issue, but something to be aware of.

One strange thing that disappointed us though, and this might be picky -- but in the mornings, only instant coffee is available upstairs and there were bugs all over it. We're early risers and basically had to wait to ~8am every morning for coffee at a hotel that advertises growing their own beans. It was probably healthy for us to learn to be more patient, but we're basically monsters until we get our coffee. I'd love to see that tweaked.

Room tip: first floor rooms lack privacy
Date of stay: March 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Alex R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 March 2018

After reading so many wonderful reviews of this hotel I had high expectations. Possibly too high? I'll start by saying that the hotel itself is very beautiful there is no denying that. It has I believe 6 rooms with views of the beautiful lake and volcanoes, one main dinning room with a bar, a rec room area with a coffee station, hammock, and a small gym area. There's also a sort of living room with a chess set and TV, There are DVD's you can check out, but from we saw there were only documentaries. We stayed in the Tecun Uman Suite. The room was spacious with a king size bed. The bathroom was very spacious with a walk in shower and double sink. They use eco-friendly toilet paper which is fine, but you end up using a lot more of it. Our daughter was with us so we also had a second bed placed in the room. The best thing about the room was the terrace. It was large with a couch, table and a couple of chairs. The view was outstanding! Absolutely stunning.
My disappointments fell onto the level of service and honestly the food which really surprised me since practically all the reviews raved about the food. We arrived in the afternoon, be aware that in the afternoon the water is *very* choppy. Luckily we do not get motion sickness. We arrived about 1/2 an hour before check in. Our room was not fully ready because the extra bed we had requested was not inside yet so we had to wait a short while before entering. While we waited the reception host escorted us into the dining room where she proceeded to tell us about their set menu. I looked over it and noticed there wasn't much on there that my daughter would eat. I knew it would be a vegetarian menu which is totally fine, but thought pasta or a grilled cheese would be available. I asked if that was all and she said yes. I got really worried, I continued by asking if there was anything kid friendly, ie, pasta? She then said yes we do have that and you can order it. Okay great! She then started to leave. So I realize this is going to sound like I am a totally snob. I truly am not. I have stayed at all sorts of levels of hotels however, when I am staying at a 5 star hotel which has high rates especially compared to all the surrounding hotels I expect a high quality of service. As she started to walk away I asked about a welcome drink she replied by saying, "Oh yes" and walked into the kitchen. A few moments later another lady came out with 3 welcome drinks. We finished our drinks and waited for our room. After we were settled in we explored around and found all the extra rooms I mentioned in the beginning of my review. Again, I need to point out that we had to find them. We were NOT given a tour or ANY information regarding the kayaks, meal hours, boat times or any other activities. I found this to be incredibly unprofessional. These are services that are expected when staying at a 5 star luxury small boutique style hotel. I was in the mood for a drink so decided to go to the bar, there was no one is sight, this was the case pretty much the whole 2 days we were there except for dinner and breakfast times. I called out a few times and waited. Finally someone showed up and went looking for a bartender. Once he showed up I asked for a cocktail menu and if they had snacks. He handed me a bar menu which had several food items on it. I asked if this menu or another a la carte menu was available at dinner. Loh and behold there was an a la carte menu!! I was pleased to find this out and wondered why the reception host had not told us about it. I later spoke to some other guests and they too were not told about the a la carte menu. They had however been given a tour of the property. During our stay we had both the a la carte and set menu. The set menu's food is better without question. The a la carte is ordinary and they do not go out of their way to make it any better. Breakfast is good. I agree with all the reviews the food is very expensive which I believe they intentionally do since the food choices are limited in Lake Atitlan.
The closet town is about a 25 min walk away, its an easy walk. Its a tiny town, but they do have a café that serves lunch. There isn't anything to do in the town. The other towns are about a 45min boat ride one way. They are worth going to. Kayaking is free and available in the morning when the waters are calm. Its very beautiful and should not be missed.
They hotel does have a very small pool. There's not enough room to swim in at all , more of a plunge pool and its cold. They have a separate jacuzzi area, but get this you have to pay for it!!!!! If I remember correctly it was $30USD for an hour. Basically you rent it out and its privately yours for that time. I thought this was a penny pincher which I frown upon, but we thought it would also be nice to soak in the evening so decided to book it. It was a no go, they decided they were going to clean it that evening and it wasn't available. We tried again the next day and it was still shut down. So no jacuzzi for us. Also they advertise a spa, but they don't actually have one. Someone they contract comes to the hotel to give the service. I booked a nail appointment and a few mins before the appointment the reception said it was canceled because the therapist could not come. Lastly, are main reason for staying 2 nights was we needed some real R&R. For my husband that involves the internet. He enjoys reading articles and relaxing. Unfortunately, the WiFi was super spotty. It kept going in and out, mainly out the whole time we were there. All in all we were highly disappointed with the service.
Lake Atitlan is beautiful and it should definitely be visited, but I would not stay at this hotel again.
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Room tip: Get a room on a higher floor
Date of stay: February 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank Lizzy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 March 2018

Everything its great! The views, the service, the place is so peaceful, the food is delicious! Definitely it is a place tu visit! The rooms are ver spacious and comfortable. Lake Atitlan is one of the greatest places in Guatemala.

Date of stay: February 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled with family
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank RaquelitaCastillo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 March 2018

My wife and I spent 4 nights at the Laguna Lodge and it was a wonderful experience. The management speaks Spanish and their native language, but very little English. They were very accommodating and understanding with our broken Spanish, so I would advise to brush up on your Spanish before arriving to make your experience more enjoyable.

We booked our trip directly with the lodge with a voucher purchased on the Clymb.com. Upon arrival we were welcomed with great hospitality. We unexpectedly had our room upgraded as well which was a nice surprise.

The vegetarian food at the Lodge was tasty, but fairly expensive. This was not a deal breaker for us as we ate lunch and dinner at other places around the lake to expand on our adventure. There is a scenic walking path from the lodge to Santa Cruz and the private boats could be hailed easily from the dock at the lodge.

The beds were comfortable and the rooms were clean. We overheard patrons at other resorts/hotels talking about scorpions and spiders, but we never found any in our room.

Date of stay: February 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
2  Thank theharr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 March 2018

This is a lovely place to stay and spend a few days at Lake Atitlan. The views from your room are out over the lake and with an outside area you can sit and watch the view. There is a small swimming pool you can use if you want. The staff were very friendly and helpful and it was nice that you could get plenty of filtered water to drink without having to use plastic bottles. A reasonably stocked bar is there and a nice restaurant although it only serves vegetarian food. Being a meat eater I was a bit worried about this but have to say the meals were all very tasty. The room was a good size and the bed very comfortable. This is a small, quiet hotel and great if you want some peace and quiet. You can walk up the hills behind the hotel but be warned, this is quite a strenuous hike and not one for the faint-hearted - make sure you take plenty to drink.

Date of stay: January 2018
  • Trip type: Travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank David C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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