Wednesday, January 26, 2011

On Your Way to Cuenca!

On our way to the States, we always stay overnight in Quito because it’s just the way it works out (most of the time). Since there are no direct flights from Cuenca to the States (yet!), you need to fly out of Guayaquil or Quito. If you work your flights just right, you can actually leave Cuenca, fly to Guayaquil and then off to the States all in one day. Unfortunately, we haven’t found the perfect number of connecting flights, so we usually spend the night in Quito.

We actually look forward to our visit to the “big city” and try to make a “day/night” of it. And to make it even more enjoyable, we found a wonderful boutique hotel right in the center of the city—near the Marriott’s and Holiday Inn Express. The Eugenia Hotel is absolutely charming and the service is impeccable. The interior is reminiscent of Italy with its painted murals and its white marble floors. The staff go out of their way to make each visit memorable. If you want some more great places to check out during your stay in Quito: Click here.

On our last trip after Christmas, I happened to leave my laptop with our luggage in the secure storage area while we roamed around Quito visiting the large shopping malls and parks. When we got to the airport, I realized I was missing an important piece of “luggage”—my laptop! We phoned the hotel and told them we were 40 minutes from departure and could they have my laptop ready. Well, they did better than that! When our taxi approached, they blocked off traffic, let us “scoot” by, and passed off the laptop to the taxi driver (yes, his hands momentarily left the wheel!), and we made our connecting flight with 10 minutes to spare. 
If you’re into chain hotels, the Marriott’s is actually lovely. We took a tour and oohed and ahhed at the sheer beauty of the layout and the shopping mall inside. It’s definitely impressive, but we liked the price of the Eugenia much better. And the Holiday Inn Express is exactly what you have come to expect from a chain hotel, but we wanted something just a little more personable. In the vicinity of all three hotels is a major shopping mall and lovely park.

Let’s just say that we’re spoiled with the Eugenia and we highly recommend it to those of you who are just” flying by” or who want to visit Quito for some sightseeing. Maybe in the future, we’ll have direct flights from the States to Cuenca, but until then you can be guaranteed a pleasurable night’s stay at the Eugenia Hotel
Until Next Time…Hasta Luego!

Courtyard at the Marriott
Poolside at the Marriott
Holiday Inn Express

Marriott Hotel in Quito

Park across from the Jardin Mall
Mall El Jardin - Quito (every American store imaginable!)

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Angela said...

We stayed there in December & also found the staff to be extremely helpful. We had checked 1 bag from the US & it did not arrive & since Continental has only 1 flight per day...late in the evening...we would have to spend an extra day in Quito & reschedule our flight to Cuenca. The young man at the desk worked most all night trying to locate our bag for us & talking with LAN airlines to reschedule our Cuenca flight. Since we had not planned to spend the day in Quito & really hadn't studied things to see & do there, they gave us maps & suggestions for that too. The breakfast was great & the lobby very attractive. Our 1 issue with the hotel was the noise level. It happened to be a day before some major anniversary in Quito & all during the night buses with horns, whistles, & music passed by. Additionally some couple came in obviously intoxicated thrashing around in the middle of the night & woke us. If someone is a light sleeper, this might should be considered.

Connie Pombo said...

Good point, Angela. I now have an Ecuadorian calendar that lets me know in advance the holiday schedule (very important). ;-) We we there once when a wedding party spent the night; my hubby is a light sleeper and I sleep through earthquakes, so I know what you mean. LAN is so helpful (always!). They escorted us right on the plane and held our luggage until the rest of it could arrive. I know for sure that wouldn't happen in the States (no, I'm positive it wouldn't). Thanks for your comment!

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