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San Jorge Guestbook

Birdwatching Tour Guestbook
Birdwatching Trip Reports
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Eco-Tourist Guestbook


Name: Tom B
Country-City: Los Gatos, California
“Birds, butterflies, beauty and brilliance”
June, 2012Description: 5 of 5 stars
I should start by saying that we aren't bird-watching people - if you are, just take all the accolades I am about to heap on Jorge and his team and just multiply them tenfold.

We started off being picked up at Quito by Danny and were whisked the 15 minutes from the airport to the lodge in Quito which could have been 150 miles from there given the views and charm. A delightful old hacienda, it was quiet and the perfect place to decompress on first arriving.

The following morning we met Dr. Jorge Cruz who is, as advertised, both encyclopedia  in his knowledge and totally charming. He drove us through the cloud forest to his Milpe lodge in the rainforest and from the moment we stepped out of the car to a thrumming of hummingbirds, leaf-cutter ants marching across the path and amazing bird-song, we were captivated. We then made the lovely 1/2 mile walk to the lodge and were regaled on the way by Jorge who brings the magic of the forest to life pointing out the wonderful birdlife, the extraordinary plants and talking through the forest ecosystem.

The lodge is breathtaking, perched above the valley with wonderful views and the staff there are amazing. Henry and Seth kindly helped us Sherpa in our backpacks - helpful given that we had an 8 and 10 year old with us. At the lodge the rooms are basic, but comfortable, however, given that we spent our time outside watching the wonderful sights of the forest, lying in hammocks and eating Margarita's delicious food, the room was almost irrelevant. Jorge and Henry took us on various day and night treks through the forest to beautiful waterfalls and we saw extraordinary wildlife at the lodge and on the trails.

We could not have been more thrilled with our four days with Jorge and his team and would love to have seen his other lodges as well. If you are going to Ecuador make this a stop on your tour and, if you have children, it is a wonderful introduction for them to new environments and Jorge's explanations bring it to life in all the vivid colours of the rainforest.


Angela Banbury
December 21 – January 3, 2012

I’m not a hiker. Or a birder. I am an avoider of tours and not exactly in peak physical condition. I’m into insect avoidance. My travel partner is an overly particular, and often unwilling, participant in my travel schemes. How is it possible that these eco-lodges would provide the perfect vacation for us?

The magic that makes the lodge circuit created by Dr. Cruz work is that each location provides a different environmental experience but a similar and cozy housing experience. Each lodge is peaceful, has gleaming wooden floors, provides expertly groomed trails, has warm and attentive staff and cranks out meals you won’t soon forget.

I loved each lodge for different reasons: San Jorge Quito for its whimsical charm, de Milpe for the trail of waterfalls and toucans eating bananas just outside my room; and lovely Tandayapa for its peaceful hillside perch, the panoramic view room with clouds floating past, and a mule named Gertrude bringing my luggage up from the main road.

Even after traveling to 40 other countries this was the trip of a lifetime for me. The lodges allow you to sit back and relax or jump up and get active, as you wish. You have the time and space to let it all sink in and you have Dr. Cruz and other guides to take you on tours and explain what interests you.

There, I was a hiker, a birder and a happy taker of tours. I ate healthy food and walked on enough trails that I perhaps even improved my physical condition. My travel partner loved the rustic opulence of the lodges and the comfort of all transportation being efficiently handled by San Jorge. This vacation allowed us to drop our (often silly) americanized expectations and enjoy one of the most biodiverse countries on earth. Right up close and in person. We loved it.

Here are a few basic points to help you explore the possibilities.

• San Jorge Quito
o 20 minutes from Quito airport by car
o Eco-system: high barren plains
o Altitude: about 11,000 feet
o Wildlife highlights: more than 100 species of birds native only to the Andes region
o Best features: whimsical design of lodge and grounds; proximity to Quito and the airport; the rich, chocolaty coffee atop the wood burning stove in the dining room

• Tandayapa
o 50 minutes from San Jorge Quito by car
o Eco-system: cloud forest
o Altitude: varies between 5,000 and 6,000 feet
o Wildlife highlights: 26 species of hummingbirds and wide variety of other birds
o Best features: tranquility of the cloud forest, available upgraded panoramic view rooms, the hundreds of birds you can see from the open-air dining area

• de Milpe
o 2 hours from San Jorge Quito by car
o Eco-system: tropical rain forest
o Altitude: 3,500 feet
o Wildlife highlights: 300 species of orchids, 11 waterfalls, 400 species of birds
o Best features: grounds and trails surrounding the lodges

Room Tip:
I'd ask for anything up high and on a corner with lots of windows!


“High Quality Eco Tourism - The Magic of San Jorge Eco-Lodge & Botanical Reserve”
Sierra Club Group Leader – Ana C
Tour date:  August 15 – 24, 2011

I returned recently from an excellent tour "Magic Hiking Circuit of Ecuador" visiting three San Jorge Eco-Lodges and Botanical Reserves with a group of Sierra Club members from Los Angeles area. I have never returned from a trip so excited and happy Just about everything on this trip surpassed my expectations. The booking and pre-trip arrangements made with Cheryl Korowotny, their Int'l Director of Sales, went very smoothly, our questions were answered promptly, documents delivered on time. On our arrival to Quito Airport we were greeted by manager Jose then transferred to San Jorge Quito, a beautiful hacienda situated in the foothills above Quito. The rooms were very nice, spacious and clean. Several had fireplace and a balcony. Very different, but just as lovely and special were the Tandayapa and de Milpe lodges we visited later. Our dinner on the first night was light and delicious. The table was beautifully set up with fresh flowers and colorful Ecuadorian textiles and napkins. The service that night and during our entire tour was excellent, gracious and professional.

The Old Colonial Quito city tour next day led by Dr. Cruz was very interesting. The highlight was Ecuador's most ornate church "La Compania" with gorgeous golden interior. Our lunch at the lovely, historic Heladeria San Augustine restaurant was a true culinary experience. I soon realized that Ecuadorians take tourism very seriously. Our host Dr. Cruz and his staff treated us like best friends not like tourists that come and go. They did whatever they could to make us feel good and welcome They served freshly squeezed juices at breakfast, lunch and dinner. The meals were prepared with locally grown vegetables and herbs. They were light and and healthy, a real delight for the eyes too.

The nature hikes led by Dr. Cruz and his aides were easy to moderate, well-paced, giving us enough time to observe vegetation, birds, wildlife and take photos. Dr. Cruz was an outstanding tour guide. He has an impressive knowledge of ornithology, medicinal plants, wildlife as well as geology and other related fields. He shares it with enthusiasm and a great sense of humor. The trails on all locations were well maintained, some were new, relatively easy to walk. During our hiking expeditions at Tandayapa and particularly at de Milpe canyon I got this wonderful feeling of walking in a fantasy land, a natural paradise like in a 3D movie. We were surrounded by plants with gigantic leaves and toll trees reaching high up for the light. Many exotic plants with beautiful flowers, we so carefully grow in pots at home, were growing all around us, just much bigger and nicer. Swimming in the pools under the waterfalls in the jungle was almost surreal, so much fun...In all, a beautiful adventure with a touch of magic.

Dr. Cruz and his staff are delivering a high quality, real eco-tourism with a lot of respect for the nature and the visitors who come to learn, explore and enjoy it. Congratulations! I can only highly recommend it.

Room Tip:
A room with a balcony overlooking the valley and the city of Quito at San Jorge Quito lodge, a room with a valley/canyon view in other lodges. Rooms on second floor have better view.


Name: Rosalina Pevsner – Concorde Spirit Tours
Country-City:  North Carolina, USA
Date: May 18 – 21, 2011
I went to San Jorge Lodge in Quito and to Tandayapa.  The transportation was very good, the personal service with Estaban for bird identification was very helpful, and the food was plentiful and well prepared.  The facilities were well maintained.


Name: Marian and Steve Rothstein
Country-City:   California, USA
Date: The Magic Birding & Cultural Tour Date May 11 - 16, 2011
We visited Quito and Tandayapa.  The transportation was very good, the food was excellent and we thought the 3 guides we used were very good.  Our Galapagos Islands extension was very exciting.


Name: Debi Gershow and Bill Talley – Destinations & Adventures International
Country-City:  Ohio, USA
Date: May 9 – 12, 2011
The transportation, staff and lodging and food and grounds were all excellent.  We also liked our bird guide. San Jorge was the best part of our 12 day trip that included Peru.


Name: John and Lucy Dykes
Country-City:  Atlanta, GA
Date: April 3-8, 2011
Our transportation was good, the staff very attentive, friendly and helpful. The Milpe room was fantastic and both Quito rooms were excellent. The food was good at Milpe, well prepared and well presented.  We would definitely recommend San Jorge to friends.  We also went to the Galapagos Islands and would also recommend it. 


Name: Stephen Cox
Country-City:  Idaho, USA
Date: February 1 - Februray 17, 2011
I wanted to give you some feedback on our recently completed trip to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. All of the San Jorge lodges (Quito, Tandayapa, Milpe) were very nice and the staff at all of them were just terrific! Jose at Quito was totally pleasant and helpful, Vincente and Daisy were most gracious and professional in the dining room. It was remarkable at Tandayapa and Milpe to see men who had been working all day in rubber boots serve us meals all dressed up and doing a very professional job of table service. The food was terrific in all lodges and actually way too much. After while we asked for just soup and fruit for lunch, leaving out the "plata fuerte" in concern for our waistlines.

Dr. Jorge was a great guide on the one birding trip we took; his obvious encyclopedic knowledge of the birds and his ability to identify them in tough jungle viewing conditions were very impressive.

Our Quito guide Peter was very nice, knowledgeable and entertaining. Driver Pedro (or Peter II as we called him) was excellent and very safe (in contrast to the general motoring public, who passed on curves with oncoming traffic - we did not witness any collisions as they happened, but did see the aftermath of a couple). Our half-day tour of Quito was very nice and Kathy and I both remarked that after lunch we should have stayed downtown for a couple of hours more on our own before being picked up and returned to the lodge.

The shaman experience was unforgettable! There were repeated sprayings of cane alcohol from her mouth, applications of oil, beating by leafy branches, rubbing by eggs and special stones. We really did not know what to expect and it was a bit shocking at first (my wife got the first treatment, so I got to see what she experienced), but it is a most interesting cultural experience. The Otavalo market was enjoyable and I was able to test my bargaining skills as we purchased a number of textiles and other items.

The Yacht Eden and Galapagos cruise lived up to all expectations. Our guide Jorge (think his last name was Espinosa, but I am not sure of that) was excellent; the staff on the boat were very good, and the meals were fantastic, especially considering the tiny galley that Chef Fernando had at his disposal. Alejandro the barman became a special friend.

All of the arrangements, transfers, etc. went off without a hitch and it was always very nice to know that we were being looked after and didn't have to struggle with transportation. I also want to thank you for all of your pre-trip help and providing us with complete documentation for all phases of our visit. We will be enthusiastic boosters of San Jorge Eco-Lodges for any of our friends and family that are planning on visiting Ecuador or the Galapagos Islands.


Name: Sandy Mendel
Country-City:  New York, USA
Date: February 18 - March 3, 2011
I want to thank you and tell you what a wonderful trip we had to the Galapagos and San Jorge Eco-Lodges. Everything was very well planned and organized and Frank and I enjoyed every minute of it. We were well taken care of all along the way. The Aida Maria captain, crew, and guide were all exceptional and delightful to travel with. The other guests were wonderful also, we enjoyed the diversity of the group and made several new friends. A special thank you too for the best cabin on the boat, we were right behind the captain on the top deck, it made a big difference. The San Jorge group at all of the lodges were very welcoming and made us feel safe, and at home everywhere we traveled. Jose especially took very good care of us, but of course Dr. Jorge Cruz was the guide and host that made our Ecuador adventure one of the best trips we have ever been on. Traveling and birding with Dr. Cruz is an experience that is hard to equate with any other. He shares his knowledge, experience, love, and passion for Ecuador without reservation. We felt privileged to have his company throughout our travels to Quito, Yanacocha, Tandayapa, and Milpe and hope to stay in contact and visit again.

You did an wonderful job of planning an itinerary for us and everything went very smoothly. The accommodations were clean and very comfortable, and the service was first rate all the way.


 

Country-City:  Auckland, New Zealand
Date: November 1, 2010
E-mail: rmccord@socal.rr.com
We stayed at all three lodges and apart from my suffering a bit from the effects of the high altitudes, thoroughly enjoyed all of them.
Cheryl, who handles the bookings, was very helpful and patient, answering my many questions without any problems. The locations were beautiful and very well set up. We were served great 3 course meals 3 times a day, which were included in the price of the accommodation. George knows a lot about the local flora and fauna and is an avid bird spotter. He took us on several very good walks and, while I am not a bird watcher, I was nevertheless fascinated by the many varieties of hummingbirds and other bird species in the Cloud Forest and Rain forest. George and his wife made every effort to see that we were comfortable and happy and the staff at all 3 lodges were very friendly and professional.


Name: Nora Pedersen
Country-City:  Mustington Beach, CA, USA
Date: August 23, 2010
E-mail: rmccord@socal.rr.com
Service was excellent, friendly, professional, attentive. I love my small bed, fireplace, hot showers and skylight. Food is the best! Excellent! Best soups I ever tasted! Fresh juices, sophisticated presentation! Live music! All trails well maintained.
We were very very pleased.


Name: Sabrina Costermans
Country-City:  Amsterdam
E-mail: scostermans@hotmail.com
Date: August 23, 2010
The transportationwas very good and the staff was very friendly.  I have never had such a personal approach for so many days.  The beds and showers were really good. We had   lost offood and we liked the fresh fruits and juices.  The birdwatching was fun and I got to do something I never done before.  All the info George gave us was very interesting. The hike was great!!! Thanks for the lovely stay!!!


Name:  Maurice & Martha Roberts
Country-City:  CT, USA
Date: August 23, 2010
E-mail:mroberts@ric.edu
Transportation was very good. Service was excellent, lodging adequate and charming .  Excellent job catering to my needs.  Maintenance excellent. All our guides and trips were outstanding!! Thank you Jose, Jorge and Alex!! Cheryl was very helpful.


Name: Jim Davidson
Country-City:  Toronto Canada
Date: August 23, 2010
E-mail: jdavidson@macmillanrooke.com
The staff was truly excellent. Jose was extremely helpful and his suggestions were great. Vicente was a pleasure and always smiling! Good lodging. We loved the food, good quality, big portions, well presented. You have great chefs!  Cheryl provided good assistance.



Name: Audrey Mohan, PhD  – University of Texas
Country-City: San Antonio, Texas, USA
Date of travel: 25 June – 1 July, 2010
E-mail: Audrey.mohan@utsa.edu
All tours were well planned, with good guides and appropriate for our ability level.  The trails were excellent and in good condition.  The rooms were great, especially at San Jorge de Tandayapa Eco-Lodge!  It had beautiful views and great beds.  The service is excellent!  This is a wonderful place for groups.  They had very nice buses and easy transfers.  The food is the best in Ecuador!  Thank you for accommodating our dietary needs.  Cheryl Korowotny was awesome—we really appreciate her help and it made it easy for the university.  Muchas gracias!



Name: Rick and Dana Nichols
Country-City: San Antonio, Texas, USA
Date of travel: 20 June – 23 June 2010
E-mail: danalee1sa@yahoo.com
The staff was extremely helpful.  José coordinated all of our events and he was always friendly and helpful.  Vicente was great, too!  The room was nice with a comfortable bed.  The food was extraordinary and with beautiful presentation.  It was fresh, healthy and simply delicious – we want to buy a cookbook.  The transportation and maintenance was excellent.  The staff works very hard to keep the grounds neat and attractive.  Vicente must be the hardest working man in Ecuador.  The medicinal plant tour was good.  Patricia was very friendly and helpful.  The birdwatching tour was great.  Jorge was an excellent guide.  Not only was he extremely knowledgeable, but he had a true passion for birdwatching.  He was very helpful and friendly.


Name: Karyn Shoeve and Larry Wilhelm
Country-City: Texas, USA
Date of travel: 4 June – 9 June 2010
E-mail: kschoeve@fastpace.com
The transfers were very helpful because few taxis seem to know the location of the lodge.  The staff was great—very attentive.  Chelsea was excellent!  The food was very well done.  Lunch is pricey, but good quality.  The roads are a little bumpy but the grounds are nice.  There were so many tours that we could not participate in.  We really appreciate all the assistance.  Cheryl did a good job of repping the product.


Name: Janice and David Lakeman
Date of travel: June 20, 2010
E-mail: C2000construction@telus.net
Jorge was excellent.  He was the best guide we had—including the Galapagos and Cajas Park.  The extension trip to the Galapagos was great.  Cheryl was very good helping us before the trip.


Name: Jill and John Campbell
Country-City: Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA
Date of travel: 20 June – 23 June 2010
E-mail: jillacampbell@gmail.com
All the lodges had very good food—fresh, local, good portions.  Everything tasted great.  The transportation between lodges was reliable and comfortable.  The service was excellent.  The staff was friendly and helpful.  The rooms are all in good condition.  The hiking trails were very well kept.  Jorge is an excellent birding guide.  Cheryl Korowotny was very thorough and responsive before the trip.  She managed all the details of our trip very well.  She was a pleasure to work with.



Name: Bonnie Reimer and Lara Byrne
Country-City: Madison, WI, USA
Date of travel: 23 May—25 May, 2010
E-mail: bonnie.reimer123@gmail.com
The lodge was very nice.  It was clean and comfortable and had a beautiful setting.  We were very impressed with the quality of the trails.  Transportation was excellent.  The driver was courteous and gave good information about the area.  The service was excellent.  The staff was attentive and very professional.  The rooms were beautiful.  They were clean and had all we needed.  There were also nice views.  The food was fantastic.  We enjoyed all our meals.  The food and servers were top notch. 


Name: Sheila Murphy
Country-City: Dublin, Ireland
Date of travel: 26 April – 28 April 2010
E-mail: smurphy93@gmail.com
I enjoyed the day at Tandayapa and everyone involved in helping us was very kind.  It was a great experience to see so many hummingbirds and experience the cloud forest and the interesting journey there across the equator line.  Everything at lodge from the transportation, to service, to the rooms to the food were excellent.


Name: Jenifer Russell and Marcia Himes
Country-City Queenstown, MD, USA
Date of travel: 23 Jan – 25 Jan 2010
E-mail: petdocmd@yahoo.com
The transportation was excellent.  It was easy for us as first time visitors to Ecuador.  The driver was very friendly and informative.  The staff was very accommodating, fast and friendly.  The rooms were very clean and at a good value.  The food was excellent, although we couldn’t eat it all!


Name: Marie and Garnet Shoup, Mark and Judy Olake
Country-City: Ontario, Canada
Date of travel: 19 April—22 April, 2010
Jorge was exceptionally knowledgeable and excellent at sharing his knowledge with us.  The hike was at a good pace.  The service was exceptional.  The rooms up above were great.  The food was excellent.  It was wonderful trying new foods.  The hiking trails were very good.


Name: Robert Cole
Country-City: New York, NY, USA
E-mail: Robertreedcole@mae.com
Señor Jorge was a wonderful guide and very knowledgeable.  The trails were excellent.  The staff was very friendly, courteous and helpful.  The rooms were very comfortable and nicely decorated.  The food was excellent.  It was beautifully served and arranged.  And it was very accommodating to special requirements.


Name: Dylan and Joana Lormand
Country-City: Alliston, Ontario, Canada
Date of travel: 2 February – 4 February 2010
E-mail: lormand_dyl@hotmail.com
We went to Otavalo.  We enjoyed this trip very much.  Renato, our guide, was informative and easy going.  We enjoyed your country’s beautiful culture and landscape.  The transportation was fabulous!  Jose was terrific.  The staff was terrific.  The food was good.  The rooms were clean with lots of hot water.  It was all we could ask for.  San Jorge in Quito exceeded our expectations.


Name: Aaron Lund and Jenny West
Country-City: Boulder, Colorado
Date of travel: 20 March – 21 March & 27 March
E-mail: Aaron-Lund@hotmail.com
The staff was excellent.  The chef made the best food we had in Ecuador.  They helped a lot when we got stomach illnesses in the Galapagos.  I also appreciated being offered the Turkish bath when I was sick.  All service at the airports was good.   I hope to come back to Quito and San Jorge Lodges with my friends.  I’m not interested in going back to the Galapagos.  The lodge is a cool place.


Name: Terence Land
Country-City: Ontario, Canada
Date of travel: 1 February – 8 February 2010
E-mail: tjland@gorebaycable.com
The rooms were generally OK.  There was nothing that wasn’t immediately addressed once I brought it to their attention.  The transportation was very efficient and on time.  I have never received friendlier or more thoughtful staff.  Personal touches by Jose were especially applauded.  The food was first class, tasty and all new to me.  The trails were fine.  Physically I thought everything was fine.  Dr. Cruz was very knowledgeable and attentive. Danny was on two hikes and was excellent in calling in and identification.


Name: Sue Andrew
Country-City: Toronto, Ontario Canada
Date of travel: 3 February – 10 February
E-mail: siandrew@rogers.com
The lodging was very good and beyond expectations.  Jorge was very knowledgeable about birds and native plants.  He likes to teach and is good with scope and allowing people to view.  Estalin is a great spotter and knows his birds.  He was very pleasant and helpful.  The staff was terrific.  Jose is extremely accommodating.  Jorge is very pleasant, knowledgeable and wishes to improve on services.  All other staff – Lillianna, Estalin, Camillo, Pilar, Vicenza were great. The trails were very good.  A few more signs were needed at Milpe waterfalls and Tandayapa lodge at bifurcation. The food was “too much” but better to keep the hungry happy.  It had great presentations and variety.  The use of local dishes was appreciated. 


Name: Dennis and Barb Bolan
Country-City: 9, Northfield, MA USA
Date of travel: 25 February – 28 February, 2010
Tours were well done.  The guide was new but excellent.  The weather cooperated and everything was excellent.  The transportation was very good and on schedule.  The staff was excellent.  They were very helpful and professional.  The rooms were very good.  The sites are well maintained and clean.  The sites also blend into the surrounding very well.  The food was excellent and plentiful.  Trails were very good.  Roads were rough and we are glad we didn’t drive.  


Name: Saúl Nieves and Susan Matloff
Country-City: Brooklyn, New York, USA
Date of travel: 20 March – 27 March 2010
E-mail: susansaulnieves@msn.com
We took the tour of Otavalo, Tandayapa and Milpe.  We liked that the tours Country-Cityed our interests in nature and culture.   The guides were very informative, curious about our interest and willing and able to have substantive discussions about the country.  They made us feel that we could ask any questions.  We were made to feel comfortable to ask for information about this beautiful country.  The service was excellent.  The staff is attentive, warm and knowledgeable.  We felt very personally cared for.  We felt very much at home.  The staff is courteous and thoughtful (we stayed at Quito).  The transportation was excellent.  It was prompt and courteous.  They were also very safe drivers and we felt secure always.  The lodges were beautiful and comfortable.  We especially enjoyed the fire at night and the lovely décor.  We appreciated also the eucalyptus placed in our room for our son’s cold and special arrangements to store his medications.  We also enjoyed the historical info and books available.  The food was delicious and healthy.  We enjoyed trying so many new fruits, vegetables and dishes.  Meals were also a learning experience and every dish delicious.  Every meal was different and cooked to perfection.  The trails are well maintained and we enjoyed them.  They are very beautiful.  The lodge was well-maintained and comfortable, and very clean.  The grounds are beautiful and well cared-for.  Everything has been beautiful and we hope to return for a longer stay.  The only suggestion might be to orient guests in large groups who are not familiar with hiking in nature that it is best to walk quietly, but this is a very small item in a very large experience that has been wonderful!


Name: Neville Pamment and Marj Pegler
Country-City: Clifton Hill, Australia
Date of travel: May 2010
E-mail: npamment@bigpond.net.au
We don’t usually like guided tours.  Jorge is very knowledgeable about all aspects of local and natural history.  The Galapagos trip on Millenium was excellent.  The food was very tasty but too much!  Otherwise the rooms are very nice and the trails are very well maintained.  The transportation service and staff are all very good.


Name: Ruth Hamler
Country-City: Folsom, CA, USA
Date of travel: 21 May – 23 May, 1 June – 2 June, 2010
E-mail: ruth.hamler@intel.com
The transportation was very punctual and helpful.  It is nice to have a friendly face waiting for you at the airport.  Everybody was friendly and helpful.  They were very accommodating, made me feel at home.  Las habitaciones son comfortable.  La comida fue excelente!  Vicente y Rosa son excelentes cocineros.  No tuvimos ningún problema caminando.  Pedro fue muy informativo y venia bien preparado para nuestro escurción.  Yo sé lo recomendaría a otras personas visitando a Quito.  Nuestra visita a los Galapagos fue excelente.  Pensamos regresar en el futuro.


Name: Michael Todisco & Debra Todisco
Country-City: Massachusetts, USA
Sent: 11/18/2009
Friends at the Eco-Lodge Greetings from the USA…. Thank you so much for making our visit to Ecuador extra special. We were amazed and delighted with your beautiful lodge and extra friendly and accommodating staff, especially Jose. He was very helpful, informative all combined with a very pleasant personality. The guides were very impressive, Renato and Patricia we very good at their jobs and full of knowledge. I hope Renato is recovered from the torture I put him through on our mountain bike ride ? You can be sure when we visit Quito again we will be staying with you. We will highly recommend San Jorge Lodge to our friends as well. Again, many thanks and we wish you all the best!
Name: Jennie Martin , Nick Martin, Ada Rivera
Country-City: Trevon, Wisconsin USA
Sent: 7/3/2009
The Botanical and Birding tours were superb. As beginners , Dr George Cruz was patient and kind .He walked closely with us to ensure that we understood the highlights of the tours . He made everything interesting and connected his lectures to what we know or understood, making everything an extremely educational and fun experience.
Our guide, Dr Cruz was a walking encyclopedia of history, culture , birding and botany. I have never been so impressed by the knowledge base of a guide , as I was with him.
I was amazed with the variety of the cuisine ! The meals were exquisite . IT was tantalized each day with a different meal, one meal was only surpassed by the next or the next. I can not think in anything you can improve at this time. My hope is that the service does not change when the franchise expands!! We will be back!!!



Name: Ellen See
Country-City: Hartford, CT USA
Sent: 3/15/09
We just had a wonderful week aboard the EDEN yacht on their 7 night/8 day cruise around the Galapagos Islands. The boat was well designed, well outfitted and very comfortable. The noise level in our cabin (#3) below deck was constant because of the generator (and the motor when we were cruising) but it served as “white noise” and did not interfere with our sleep. The crew were very nice and tried hard to accommodate our needs. Our bilingual guide, Jorge, was especially good as a naturalist, teacher and schedule keeper. He made our evening briefings about the next day’s activities informative and a lot of fun. The food was varied, delicious and plentiful. All ‘n all, I would definitely recommend the EDEN for anyone interested in a small boat experience.



Name: Jack and Deborah Dornell
Country-City: Morrison, CO USA
Sent: 2/16/2009
We very much enjoyed the Medicinal Plant Tour with Vicente . He has much knowledge. Patty was a good translator and very eager to learn more English.
Julia gave us personalized tours . She is a excellent bird guide . Deborah was very happy to be able to use plant guide in English. José was very helpful and it was interesting to meet Jorge. The guides were very knowledgeable, and we learn a lot about native plants.
Food was excellent. Too bad our illness didn´t allow us to fully enjoy all the flavors. Transportation was efficient and safe. The lodges were a special treat.



 

Name: Dana, Rebecca Broadway, Jack Kane, Viviane Hellebuyck
Country-City: Middle Grove, NY USA
Sent: 2/16/2009
San Jorge de Tandayapa and Milpe are gorgeous. Morning Quito tour by José was great! Jorge, the owner is extremely knowledgeable about so many things. Having him as our guide was extremely fortunate. We could be listen to him all day. José was terrific in the city AM tour . We really learned a lot from him. Outstanding!! The service was exemplary!! Overall, our experience was wonderful and we will never forget what a great time we had in Ecuador because of San Jorge Eco-lodges. Food was excellent, portions are too generous!




Name: Don Shaver
Country-City: Mill Valley, CA USA
Country-City: Lake Worth, Florida USA
Sent: 2/16/2009
All aspects of the tour to San Jorge de Quito, Tandayapa and Milpe were well coordinated . The people that were our guides and brought our food went well beyond all expectations . The helpfulness went beyond expectation. Facilities were well kept and food was excellent.
The attention we got in the biking trip was great . The guides were always attentive. The food was excellent, well prepared and good variety. Transportation well coordinated.



Name: Leigh and Pam Matanov
Country-City: Alexandria, Virginia USA
Sent: 1/16/2009
We stayed in your lodges but we had no tours. Our favorite was Milpe because the lodging and dining hall were beautiful buildings in fabulous settings. We were your second guests at Tandayapa and enjoyed the trails and birding there. Irina prepared our meals at Milpe and Tandayapa. Our stay was special at the hacienda because of the historical preservation of the wonderful buildings. We enjoyed our cozy room in the hacienda and the heater you so kindly provided us. We are from Florida where it is much warmer than here. We specially liked the hummingbird in our bathroom window-at her nest!

José met us and was always friendly and accommodating, filling our every need. Vicente, Segundo, Pepe and their helpers made our stay one of pleasure and joy. They were always ready to be of service. The food was always interesting, varied and delicious. We specially enjoyed the wonderful soups, no two alike. The tracts of land that you have preserved at Tandayapa and Milpe are irreplaceable treasures and the way you put in the trails and facilities provided wonderful access with minimum impact, reflecting your love and sensitivity for nature . Thank you for everything!



Name: Phil and Ann Weinrich
Sent: 1/16/2009
All aspects of the tour to San Jorge de Quito, Tandayapa and Milpe were well coordinated . The people that were our guides and brought our food went well beyond all expectations . The helpfulness went beyond expectation. Facilities were well kept and food was excellent.
The attention we got in the biking trip was great . The guides were always attentive. The food was excellent, well prepared and good variety. Transportation well coordinated.




Name: Sir Christian Bonington
Country-City: New Market, Wigton Cumbria, UK
Sent: 12/3/2008
San Jorge de Quito is perfectly situated and has a wonderful atmosphere. We had a wonderful stay. José looked after us really well during our stay. The hotel services are friendly and helpful at all times.




Name: Shirley A Wager-Pagé
Country-City: Washington DC USA
Sent: 12/3/2008
San Jorge de Milpe is excellent. Wonderful setting. We enjoyed the entire experience. Quito City tour: The guide very knowledgeable about the history and art. Otavalo Tour, we enjoyed the market and Juan Carlos, very resourceful And we enjoyed his company. He knew a lot about the culture and geography of the country. Airport transfers were excellent. Food excellent, Great lodging, maintenance Good. Hiking trails in Milpe, excellent. It was an excellent experience and we would recommend San Jorge Eco-lodges to our friends and family.




Name:
Fred and Diana Bradshaw
Country-City: Damascus, Oregon, USA
Sent: 11/15/2008
Excellent hotel and tourism services at San Jorge Quito. José and Segundo are great! Food is very good . We enjoyed Anthony a lot. Our rooms were very comfortable. We enjoyed our hike up to the Canyon .Beautiful! We loved the hummers !




Name:
Anne Sammis and Eric Gropp
Country-City: Portland OR USA
Sent: 11/15/2008
Transportation was great , food was awesome, maintenance , hotel, was very clean , lovely furniture and doors. Wonderful service, very nice staff, excellent service. We will be back!!! Hiking trails are awesome. Wished we had more time. THANK YOU!!!



Name: Sarah Patterson
Country-City: Leet Totnes, UK
Sent: 10/12/2008
We really enjoyed the lodges. San Jorge de Milpe is a place of such beauty and deep healing. It is rare to visit a pristine natural environmental of primary forest. The birds, the waterfalls, the company and the sense of independence. The values of protection and conservation have made this a magical healing and at times a humbling experience. Thank you! I loved the medicinal plant tour and being introduced to such a wonderful range of birds. George Cruz’s knowledge is staggering and his ability to transmit that knowledge made the tours a joy. The hotel and touristic services are all excellent. Wonderful food and warm heart, real enthusiastic staff. It was great.




Name:
Tracy and Dave Duerst
Country-City: Des Moines , WA USA
Sent: 10/1/2008
San Jorge de Quito and San Jorge de Milpe the food and service are outstanding. Guided tours, by Dr George were very educational and full of knowledge. Rooms were rustic but very comfortable . We found the trails accesable and easy to follow and use. Very beautiful waterfalls, trails, viewing spots and lodges. We will highly recommend the Reserves to everyone.




Name:
Stan and Rusty Towers
Country-City: Ann Arbor Michigan USA
Via Huron Scuba
Sent:9/7/2008
Yes, we did enjoy tour with San Jorge every day.
All were outstanding -  well organized  for comfort, convenience, and access to the various  ecosystems
they represent.  All our  guides were knowledgeable, friendly, flexible, and passionate about their work, their speciality and their beautiful country of  Ecuador.
We were impressed with all aspects of  your services, specially the warmth and personal concern shown by all all staff for our comfort and satisfaction. San Jorge Ecolodge exceeded our expectations and  made us very happy  hat we chose it.
We will recommend you with enthusiasm !
What to improve?
Nothing, except continue to maintain your mission and your standards.




Name:
Jeff & Collin Daniels
Country-City: Willis, Michigan USA
Via Huron Scuba Adventures/Michigan Sent:8/17/2008
We stayed in San Jorge Eco-Lodge/Quito for 3 days.
An excellent stay – all requests were handled professionally.
Reynaldo for guidance of the Quito City Tour and Middle of the World – very pleasant and knowledgeable.
Jorge (owner) for guidance of Birdwatching, Medicinal Plants & Waterfalls – EXTRAORDINARY. Finds and identifies all the birds; an expert on plants.
Otavalo Indian Market – wonderful! Outstanding! Great guidance, deep knowledge of history and anthropology.
Food very well prepared and tasty; excellent fruits and juices.
The Lodge is very well maintained and attractive.



Name: Timothy Luchies & Laura Landertinger
Country-City: Toronto, Canada
Sent:8/11/2008
San Jorge de Quito Eco-lodge was excellent, though we didn´t take any tours - the location and services were great! We visited the Reserve Loop Trail and some of Inca Trail. The views, especially of the waterfalls and surroundings are gorgeous. Everything was ideal – the food was delicious – the trails, the lodging were well taken care of and the staff was very helpful. How you can improve? No need.



Name: William and Angela Aldrich
Country-City: Davidsburg, Michigna USA
Sent:8/3/2008
The services in the restaurant, lodging, guidance and transportation are more than expected.



Name: Susan Snyder & Carolyn Callahan
Frommers Travel Book
Sent: 6/11/2008
We had an enjoyable stay here.  The meals were really nice and filling.  I loved the style of all the eco-lodge, especially the rooms.  The grounds were immaculately kept.  All the staff was great and friendly but I’d like to especially mention Vicente who provided excellent service to us.  I suspect he is ‘superman’ as we saw him waitering us, gardening, cleaning the pool, etc.  I loved seeing all the hummingbirds. We enjoyed the walk on the blue trail. Beautiful views – loved wildflowers on the hike. Comfortable, cozy room. Rooms were great, as same as sauna.



Name: Shirley and Charles Watson
Country-City: Kansas City USA
Sent: 6/11/2008
We visited San Jorge de Milpe. It is a very nice lodge. Very comfortable . The food was excellent . We did a night hike ,bird watching and the cascades trips. All were excellent . I loved walking through the rain forest. Jorge was our guide and was excellent . The food was delicious, staff was very efficient and polite. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay



Name: Robert and Marilyn Munto
Country-City: Kansas City USA
Sent: 6/11/2008
We visited San Jorge Eco-lodge, San Jorge and the Reserve at Milpe. The accommodations and food were wonderful as were the guided tours. Our guide, Jorge was extremely knowledgeable and very kind and helpful.



Name: Al and Kay Weaver
Country-City:Tampa Fl USA
Sent: 6/11/2008
We enjoyed birdwatching and waterfall tours at San Jorge de Milpe, Medicinal Plant and Flower tour at San Jorge de Quito. Excellent tours. Particularly enjoyed the birdwatching at Milpe. Jorge, the owner was an excellent knowledgeable guide.



Name: Robin Croot
Country-City: Norwich, England
Sent: 5/8/ 2008
We had an enjoyable stay here.  The meals were really nice and filling.  I loved the style of all the eco-lodge, especially the rooms.  The grounds were immaculately kept.  All the staff was great and friendly but I’d like to especially mention Vicente who provided excellent service to us.  I suspect he is ‘superman’ as we saw him waitering us, gardening, cleaning the pool, etc.  I loved seeing all the hummingbirds.



Name: Heather Dean & Steve Meyers
Country-City:Anchorage, AK USA
Sent: 4/ 23/2008
We took self-guided hikes on the trails at San Jorge Botanical Reserve/Quito. The maps and signage are very helpful and the trails very enjoyable.  The waterfall/canyon trail is especially beautiful, but the other trail gives a good contrast in habitat for birders.  Everything was fantastic and we especially enjoyed and appreciated the service and interaction we had from/with Vicente.


Name: Alavio
Country-City: USA
Sent: 4/ 23/2008
Your accommodations are historic, warm and welcoming for a weary traveler.  Your hospitality is superb, the best!  Most of all, you have built a very special place, on a very special mountain in a very beautiful city.  This place and the people of Quito are my favorite in all of South America!



Good transfers waiting for us in the airport. Pleasant breakfast. Room was fine. Javier and Vicente very helpful and couteous



Name: Robert Ruenitz
Country-City: USA
Sent: 3/31/08
Transportation and lodging fine. Restautrant superb with dinner and cuisine.
We enjoyed Birdwatching, hiking and Otavalo indian market.
Otavalo very informative and guides helpful in market.
We are not birders but we enjoy the geographic interest aspects.
Hiking: Milpe hiking through the untouched  rain forest  and  waterfalls  were excellent.  Hiking  in Quito was well worked.



Name:
Lydia Saboda
Country-City:West Springfield, MA USA
Sent: 3/31/08
We enjoyed the middle of  the world tour, the mountain biking Nono Tandayapa tour, and the Otavalo tour.
All of  the tours were incredible . I loved the science part of  the middle of the world tour. The mountain biking was so much fun and it was beautiful
The Otavalo market was beautiful and I loved  all of  colors.
The room was lovely and  the food was excellent. I loved the variety . All of  the people were so nice, Silvia, Vicente, everyone!



Name: Brian and Jenny Hulse
Country-City:Atherstone, UK
Sent: 3/31/08
Milpe was very impressive and our guided morning walk to the waterfalls was excellent; also when we walked to the roundhill.
The trails were appreciated as an opportunity to walk in the forest.
Our expereience was pleasant and staff was helpful.
Gorgeous, we used the jacuzzi and steam room.  Meals were tasty.


 

Name: John Schwekeberg and  Len Schem
Country-City: Denver, Co USA
Sent: 3/31/08
Great hot water, restaurant and servcies were great - very friendly.
The Hosteria San Jorge-Quito and  its grounds are beautiful.



Name: St. Augustine’s Church Group
Sara & Adam Devries
Sent: 3/30/08
We hiked on our own at San Jorge Botanical Reserve in Quito, and it was wonderful.  The trails were great.  Restaurant and hotel services were awesome, rooms – great. You guys are great!



Name: Rosemary Dunsmore
Country-City:Ontario, Canada
Sent: 3/20/08
We found you listed in the Frommers Travel Guide. Downtown Quito was very interesting.  We loved San Jorge de Milpe Orchid & Bird Reserve, and our guide Milton, who also took us to Mindo Butterflies which was a real treat.   And the Equator museum!   Horseback riding with Paula and Vicente was fun.  Papallacta Hot Springs with Myra was wonderful.  Otavalo with Myra was excellent.  She was full of fun and helpful suggestions with shopping and marketing.  We also went to Cotocashi leather village – excellent.  Easy downhill mountain biking in Tandayapa with Vicente.  Excellent way to end our trip.  Just a beautiful, exotic ride.  We were so happy with our visit here in everyway.  I felt taken care of from the moment I connected with Cheryl by email, to our arrival to be met by George, to the care Francisco took of us everyday.  It felt like family.  I am dazzled by what your eco-lodges have to offer.  I would not hesitate to recommend San Jorge and indeed will do my best to promote it as I respect the eco-lodges goals.  We had a spectacular time.  My four-teen year old son loved it.  We hope to return soon and bring friends and family.



Name: Peter & Betsey Liljeberg
Country-City: New York, USA
Sent: 1/15/08
Family Anniversary Group:  The tour to San Jorge de Milpe Orchid & Bird Reserve – the best!  Great location and terrific service.  Drivers friendly and helpful.  The Horseback Riding tour – spirited horses, helpful cowboys, great fun!
Every staff member was extremely helpful and pleasant.  Food was outstanding.  Beautiful common room/game room.  Great website.


 

Name: Seelenfreund Family Group
Country-City: CA, USA
Sent: 1/15/08
What a beautiful place!! If you like a peaceful setting in the mountains, surrounded by animals and beautiful flowers, this is the place.  Jorge, Sr., was a guide for a wonderful hike in the hills above the Hosteria.  Loved the llama family, the mustang horses and the turkeys behind the restaurant.  The pool could have been at the finest resort.  The architecture of the Hosteria was so picturesque, I couldn’t stop taking photos.  Thank you for a wonderful experience.Horseback Riding Tour was excellent!  We enjoyed our stay very much.  The grounds are beautiful and the staff very friendly.  The food was very good.  We will be back!  Thank you!


 

Name: Al & Linda Maley
Country-City: New Hampshire, USA
Sent: 1/10/08
We enjoyed our stay at the cozy San Jorge Eco-Lodge, above the bustle of Quito.  The rooms were unique, the staff extra helpful, and the owner very gracious and attentive.  A good base for activities out of Quito.


 

Name: Tracy Napp
Sent: 1/5/08
Hosteria San Jorge is a wonderfully relaxing retreat with a friendly staff and extensive hiking options in the Pichincha Foothills.


 

 

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