It’s hard to enjoy a great vacation if you’re unhappy with your accommodation.
It’s also a timely question: For years hotels have been the natural choice for most travelers to San Juan del Sur, but as high quality homes start to dot the hillsides, more and more rooms are disappearing into the vacation rental market.
So which is right for you?
Let’s consider price, convenience and experience.
For large group travel, vacation rentals have the edge. They don’t charge by person so you won’t need to spring for multiple hotel rooms to accommodate the entire family.
But don’t forget the last minute factor – You may be able to get a discount on hotel rooms when traveling last minute.
This is the Achilles heel for vacation rentals located in remote areas. While they deliver exceptional privacy (book one with a swimming pool and you won’t have to share it with anyone), the trade off can be a bumpy trip for groceries or complicated travel arrangements to get to the nearest beach.
Most hotels in San Juan del Sur are located in central locations and those that aren’t typically offer a shuttle service to services and attractions. And for days when you’re feeling exceptionally lazy, there’s always room service.
It all depends on what you are looking for, of course. Different hotels offer vastly different experiences, as do different vacation rentals.
Vacation rental marketers often claim the authenticity factor. And they have a point. By giving travelers the ability to cook their own meals and mingle with real-life neighbors instead of other tourists at the hotel, they offer a snapshot of local living.
On the other hand you may be here specifically to enjoy a resort experience. You may want to roll out of your room, walk a few steps to the on-site restaurant and then drop into the spa for a massage.
And if your hotel has a fantastic concierge who is able to hook you into all the cool stuff you can do, that will do wonders for your experience.
So which is best?
Different strokes for different folks, really.
What do you think?
Hotel or Vacation Rental? If you’re a seasoned traveler, what are your tips? If you’re new to choosing accommodations overseas, send us your questions.
Bonus tip: Don’t make the mistake of booking an “auto hotel”. You’ll see them hidden behind high walls on the side of the road. Rented by the hour, they’re designed specifically for lovers. Each bedroom has an adjacent parking space and a curtain to hide the car. Payment is through a hatch allowing the amorous couple to remains anonymous.