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Reviews (64)
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All reviewswonderful roomthe ownerown gardensan carloshot showerin townthe riverhour boat ridearrange tourshotel is locatedrooms are spaciousa wonderful staywonderful placevegetablescastlesoundmeals
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Reviewed 15 February 2018 via mobile

El Castillo is a fun place to visit and Lara’s Planet is a fun place to stay. The room is comfortable enough, the balcony lovely, the food is fine. Natasha is a quirky host and she adds to your experience. We appreciated Natasha’s referral to a good guide for river tour and her travel advice. The other tourist restaurants and amenities are on the other side of town, a 10 minute walk. This hotel is located in a noisy residential neighborhood. We were glad we went to the trouble of visiting El Castillo and that we stayed at Hotel Lara’s Planet.

Stayed: February 2018, travelled as a couple
Thank jschuby
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 November 2017 via mobile

When we stepped in El Castillo, we rushed to Lara's Planet, which seemed to be a great place (and with lots of positive reviews), to find lodging.

The owner/manager greeted us (two humbly dressed backpackers) with the sentence "I dont have cheap rooms".

We humbly left and lodged somewhere else.

We decided to give it a second chance and went there the following day for dinner (our Lonely Planet book mentioned nice vegetarian options).

Lights were off and there was nobody - then the same woman came out of her house next to the hotel, clearly not excited about having us.

She sighted when asked about dinner and replied "I can try, but dont ask me anything complicated".

We sat down a bit embarassed and feeling unwelcomed, but decided to scan the menu.

We asked if a burger with chips would be possible - she said cutting and frying the potatoes would not be. How about a pasta carbonara? - sorry but i dont have the ingredients.

We smiled, apologized for the inconvenience of visiting, and left.

Why keep a restaurant/hotel open if you dont want clients? We are puzzled to read the 46 good reviews... did the management change?

Sam & Quitt

Stayed: November 2017, travelled as a couple
2  Thank Samuel F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 October 2017

This is one of those places you will remember. A wonderful location with the best views on the river and El Castillo. The rooms are spacious, well furnished and have the best bathrooms we saw in Nicaragua. Natasha the owner is a perfect host and can arrange all things including tours. The meals are also great with vegetables from her own garden.

Room Tip: Best rooms at the riverside, Room Danielle has the best view.
  • Stayed: October 2017, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank Gert-Jan V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hotel l, Owner at Hotel Lara's Planet, responded to this reviewResponded 15 November 2017

Dear Jan
Thank you for your kind remarks. We hope very much to see you back

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 August 2017

A lovely well designed and built small hotel with fabulous views along the river in El Castillo; It is not utterly luxurious but a little luxury, literally at the edge of civilisation. The owner, Natasha, was attentive, utterly charming and an excellent cook. She can also arrange tours that pick you up from the hotel. Our room (3 adults) was delightful and the hotel well worth its price;we were given an immediate upgrade on arrival without asking and unlike many of the places we stayed on our trip the breakfast was substantial and the coffee kept flowing. El Castillo is a 2 and a half hour very enjoyable boat ride downriver from San Carlos; boats travel in both directions several times a day. We took a boat late morning and returned upriver the following afternoon; Well well worth taking the trip and visiting the Bartola reserve and fort while you are there. yes it will probably rain for some of the time but then it is the rainforest. One of the best times we had on a 4 week trip to Nicaragua. Amazing wildlife; bring your binoculars and a poncho. Thank you Natasha for making us feel so welcome. All 3 of us gave you 10 gold stars.

Room Tip: Most rooms face the river. All rooms are upstairs and therefore further away from the mozzies
  • Stayed: July 2017, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank chuddington
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hotel l, Owner at Hotel Lara's Planet, responded to this reviewResponded 23 August 2017

Dear guests
I am so happy to know that you enjoyed your stay with us. Equally we enjoyed having you as our guests and hope to see you back.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 February 2017

We hit a cold rainy patch of weather so the open windows in our corner room were not very welcoming, however we managed to tack up covers to keep the wind out. The rooms are ok but very basic. Must take into consideration the location! A 2 hour boat ride along the mighty River San Juan. What brings this hotel to above average is Natasha the owner. Her warm welcome was a joy and together with her care for my husband who had been floored by some dodgy chicken soup (!) she made our 3 day stay as comfortable as possible. The food was simply delicious. Thanks to Natasha, her 2 girls in the kitchen. We went on a boat trip up a small winding river (forgotten name) Lots of wildlife, Highly recommended.

  • Stayed: February 2017, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank rustyairedale
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hotel l, Owner at Hotel Lara's Planet, responded to this reviewResponded 15 June 2017

Dear guest
Thank you very much for your response. I remember the days you were staying with us happen to be quite windy. It is a sort of cash 22 situation for us. The hotel is designed as an open space accommodation to take advantage of the fresh and cool wind from the rever. The downside ( which luckily does not happen too often ) is that on the days with heavy wind the corner suites get a bit affected by the rain. We were very pleased however to see that you and your friends still could enjoy your stay despite some wether disturbances. We enjoyed very much having you and your family with us and would like to thank you for your feedback

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