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“Very Disappointing”
Review of Rancho Cortez

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Rancho Cortez
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 21 September 2017

Two of us booked the half day trip which supposedly includes: a meal; a trail ride; lasso throwing; pools; western entertainment; cattle feeding; wagon ride; and roasting marshmellows.

We were told to arrive at around 13:00 and when we got there the office was locked. We found somebody in the kitchen who told us somebody should be back soon. After wandering around aimlessly for a while somebody noticed us and came and checked us in.

We started with the horse riding and while neither of us are seasoned riders this was beyond boring. We sat on the back of a slow moving horse which simply followed the horse in front of it. There was no sense of learning or actual horse riding. With that in mind I would have still been satisfied with a slow trip through the area if the guides were even slightly engaging or knowledgeable. The vast majority of the tour was in silence and when asked questions such as "oh this plant looks very unusual, what is it?" we got the response "don't know". The best we got was "What's my horses name" "X". Seriously, like drawing blood from stone. Also my saddle was slipping heavily to the left and when my partner asked the guide whether it was ok he simply said "mmm" and that was that. Again, I'm not a seasoned rider so for all I know it probably was fine but the communication was severely lacking. The horse ride was a real let down.

After that ended we were at a bit of a loose end and were offered the game room and the pool. We opted for the pool and spent about 30 minutes there which was fine. By this time it was around 15:00 and there was no mention of the lasso, wagon ride, cattle feed or indeed, anything else apparently available. We were told that dinner was served at 18:00 (if I remember correctly). Not really in the mood for chasing up the hosts to provide the extras we reasoned that we didn't fancy sitting around in the pool for a further 3 hours and decided to explore the rest of Hill Country instead.

On the plus side, the the male owner is very friendly and comes across as genuinely nice. I think the trail guides and lack of actual hosting really let this place down.

Stayed: September 2017, travelled as a couple
Thank Tom T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mary C, Owner at Rancho Cortez, responded to this reviewResponded 25 September 2017

We want all of our guests to feel welcome and accommodated during their visit to our ranch, Tom, so we're deeply sorry this didn't come across to you. We completely understand your frustration. Our guides should answer any questions you have to ensure you're comfortable and entertained on the trail ride. It sounds like our crew was having an off day when you visited -- we're sorry for dropping the ball.

We like to keep plans loose so our guests can enjoy the ranch at their own leisurely pace. We ensure the time will be filled with the fun, various activities throughout the day. We're happy to give a time estimate on the next event should you ask.

All this said, we are disappointed you didn't enjoy your visit. Hopefully, we'll have a chance to make things up to you in the future. We'll keep your feedback in mind moving forward to make sure we proactively communicate the schedule with our guests.

Sincerely,
Larry and Mary, Owners

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6 - 10 of 333 reviews

Reviewed 17 September 2017 via mobile

Just returned home to Scotland after a holiday in San Antonio. This trip was taken as a 50th birthday treat for my hubby who wanted to see the Alamo and ride a horse in Texas. Made the half day reservation with the ranch for the last day of our trip and I can only say it made the holiday perfect. From the minute we arrived , the hospitality shown to us went above and beyond what we expected. We were made to feel so welcome by Mr Larry and the rest of the guys. My husband and son and others went on a 2 hr trail ride on the horses and the rest of our party explored the ranch. We used the indoor swimming pool for a bit to cool down. Afterwards we spent time sitting with Larry and some others listening to his stories ( very funny man ) and generally just relaxing afterwards we went for dinner ( excellent home made fajitas.... yummy!) then a wee ride to go and feed the cattle with Luke and Buster. Then unfortunately it was time to leave, we had booked a taxi and were unable to stay for the camp fire really didn't want to leave.... so a big huge thank you to all at rancho Cortez for the great day had by us all, I really do hope that we can return one day for a stay over and I would 100% recommend this ranch for anyone looking for a ranch experience.

Stayed: September 2017, travelled with family
Thank beth_K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mary C, Owner at Rancho Cortez, responded to this reviewResponded 19 September 2017

It was wonderful hosting you and your family for your husband's birthday, Beth! We're so glad you all had a fantastic time on the trail rides and exploring the ranch. It's nice to know your experience here was a highlight of your trip to Texas. Thanks for all of your support.

Take care,
Larry and Mary, Owners

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Reviewed 15 September 2017

I did the day trip with my brother this Sunday just gone, and Larry and co were very welcoming and insightful to their culture and experiences - kindly over a cold beer or two and as if we'd known each other years.

- The horse back riding was very peaceful and scenic, a great way of switching off and getting away from city life.
- The lasso throwing was challenging and fun.
- The campfire at sunset/Larry's story/S'mores over the fire was also a great experience.

Would definitely recommend Rancho Cortez to others.

[John/Theo]

  • Stayed: September 2017, travelled with friends
    • Location
    • Service
Thank Yian I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mary C, Owner at Rancho Cortez, responded to this reviewResponded 19 September 2017

Thank you for the recommendation and support, Yian! We're glad you had a wonderful time on our ranch. We hope you and your brother return again in the future.

Many thanks,
Larry and Mary, Owners

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Reviewed 21 August 2017

This was my second visit to Rancho Cortez and it was like going home. I was greeted like an old friend and I enjoyed every moment of my stay. What was different was my sleeping accommodations in a recently purchased RV. The RV Park is centrally located with full 30 amp hook up. There was, of course, the expected great hot cooked meals, cattle feeding, horseback riding, and the bonfire with guitar accompaniment. The Wranglers were people oriented, well-trained, knowledgeable, friendly, helpful, and professional. As a Camper, the experience gave a more cowboy atmosphere and I strongly recommend that campers take advantage of this option. I found that the website accurately describes the various facilities and events. I enjoyed all of it and. I will be returning in the near furture.

  • Stayed: August 2017, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank pflitfin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mary C, Owner at Rancho Cortez, responded to this reviewResponded 25 August 2017

It was a delight having you stay with us in your RV! We're so glad you enjoyed all of the fun activities on the ranch as well as the welcoming environment our friendly team provides. Thanks for spreading the word about our ranch. We greatly appreciate all of your support!

Take care,
Larry and Mary, Owners

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Reviewed 9 August 2017 via mobile

Our two daughters (16 & 18) had the time of their lives at this friendly, down to earth ranch about 45 minutes from San Antonio by car. They were warmly welcomed and entertained from start to finish by the owner, Larry, his family and staff. In particular Bas, Sandon, Charlotte and Anthony made this an experience never to forget. Food was plentiful and delicious. Accommodation was spacious, clean and comfortable. There are extensive facilities including two pools, a games room, a gym and acres of unspoilt Texas hill country to enjoy. The horses were well trained and although our girls are experienced riders Rancho Cortez caters for all abilities.
Both girls were reluctant to leave and are planning to return when next in the USA.
Thank you everyone for a truly memorable and happy few days.

Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
Thank Tigersdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mary C, Owner at Rancho Cortez, responded to this reviewResponded 14 August 2017

It's fantastic you and your family had a blast staying at our ranch and exploring the area on horseback. We love being a part of your unforgettable memories. Thank you for the support. We look forward to seeing you all here again whenever you're back in the United States.

Sincerely,
Larry and Mary, Owners

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Rancho Cortez

Address: 872 Hay Holler Rd, Bandera, TX 78003-4364
Region: United States > Texas > Bandera County > Bandera
Amenities:
Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 23 Speciality Lodging in Bandera
Price Range: €80 - €183 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Rancho Cortez! Located in the cowboy capital of the world, Rancho Cortez is a Texas Dude Ranch and Cowboy Fitness Farm offering horseback riding, lodging, day trips, hiking, and more! Saddle up and live your dreams at the Texas Dude Ranch! Cowboys, cowgirls, and experienced riders will enjoy horseback riding with expert cowboy, Larry Cortez. We offer plenty of Texas-style fun with hayrides, campfires, cattle roundups, lasso lessons, swimming in our pool, or soaking in our hot tub. With a broad array of wildlife species and ruggedly beautiful landscape as far as the eye can see, the ranch is the perfect escape from urban life. Lost weight and get fit on the Cowboy Fitness Farm! Fitness and weight loss visitors will work with personal trainers under the direction of Mary Cortez. Come for our popular 30 day weight loss camp or spend just a few days or weeks. Guided hikes, water aerobics, yoga, weight training, aerobics, pilates, and horseback riding - along with classes in the air-conditioned gym - will help you meet your weight loss goals. We can get you started on the road to a healthier life and teach you new skills to take home! Come to the beautiful Texas Hill Country for the getaway of a lifetime at Rancho Cortez! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Rancho Cortez Hotel Bandera
Rancho Cortez Bandera, Texas

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