We ended a two week Latin American journey with 3 nights at La Lancha, visiting Tikal and Yaxha. We visited in late April, 2007, near the end of the dry season. It was very hot (high 90s) and the roads were dusty. On the positive side, we saw almost no insects and certainly no mosquitos. Even in the forested ruin areas, we never had to worry about insect bites (though we used bug spray lightly as precaution).
The hotel was a lovely retreat from the dust and heat. The lakeside side seemed to collect cool breezes, and we were comfortable on our porch or at the open air restaurant. Our lake side room were slow to cool down, but the system of double fans helped considerably. The pool area is small but charming.
My one warning about La Lancha is that there are a lot of stairs. Some of the casitas are relatively close to the main dining area, but would then require climbing steps down to the pool and back up. The beach area is quite a long walk down from the main hotel. If you went down there, you'd want to stay at least an hour to justify it! The beach is tiny but very charming, with a couple of loungers and canoes. Be advised that the paddles are kept up in the office, so you need to get them before you embark on the climb down to the beach.
We requested a lake view casita, not knowing that these were the farthest down from the entry/dining room area. Since one of our party was elderly, that turned out to be a challenging choice. For most people, the steps would be manageable. I felt guilty, though, that the staff had to carry our heavy suitcases (packed for 2 weeks of travel) down all those stairs, and back up at the end.
One of the charms of La Lancha is its small size. There are only ten casitas, so only 20 guests will be there at any time. Since most people go out to see ruins during the day, a choice to spend part of the day at the resort leaves you with a feeling of relative privacy. The ratio of staff to guests is very high.
The room prices at La Lancha may seem high by Guatemalan standards, but they will seem reasonable to anyone who has traveled or lived in the US or Western Europe. The prices for special outings (such as to Tikal) seemed high to me...often upwards of $100 per person, but few guests seem to arrive by private car and you are dependent on the hotel (or other tour operator) to drive you the relatively far distances to sight seeing locations. It is very helpful to be with people who know the lay of the land.
A couple of previous reviews referred to having coffee or breakfast on the porch of their casitas. We were not offered this service, but perhaps it would have been available on request. The rooms have no phones, so ordering "room service" would have to be done through the intercom system (disguised in each room by a conch shell).
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- Also Known As:
- La Lancha Hotel Flores
- La Lancha Flores