Franziska and Dan Pederson invited us to stay at their guesthouse, the Santuario Hibiscus in the Yunguilla Valley. Earlier this month, we visited for 2 nights.
A Warm Welcome
We recently spent the weekend at the Santuario Hibiscus in the Yunguilla Valley.
We had a wonderful weekend relaxing, walking in the gardens and exploring the valley. Franziska and Dan were warm and welcoming, they made us feel at home right away.
They took us on a tour of their beautiful gardens and explained about how they use water conservation, composting and recycling. As they talked, it was easy to see how much caring for the environment means to them. I think the tour of the property and explanation of what they have done to care for it, helped us enjoy our stay even more.
Video Walk-Through of Santuario Hibiscus
Watch on YouTube
Sustainable Accommodation in Yunguilla Valley, Ecuador
Watch on YouTube
Surrounded By Nature
Santuario Hibiscus is located near a little town called La Unión (Abdón Calderón) which is about an hour and fifteen minute drive from Cuenca. One of the nice things about the location is that it is in a subtropical valley so it’s warm and there are lots of flowers and fruit trees.
They use the fruit from their trees and the vegetables from their gardens as much as possible in their menu. The salad, lemonade and lemon cake we enjoyed were prepared from produce grown right on the property.
The coffee they serve is grown and prepared on site as well. Bryan is a coffee lover so this was especially interesting for him. Dan walked us through the coffee plants and explained the coffee making process to us.
The guesthouse is really nice and the rooms are all individually decorated. Each room has it’s own private bathroom with a nice hot shower, comfortable beds and lots of extra pillows. There is a little library with a computer and internet connection. I really like rustic decor, so I enjoyed the rustic elegance at Santuario Hibiscus. The home and it’s decor blend well with the surrounding property.
We saw a lot of birds and humming birds during our stay. It was nice to hear them singing while we sat outside and ate lunch, and when we relaxed in the afternoon. When we were talking with Dan and Franziska about the birds on the property, they explained that just up the road, at the Jocotoco Conservation Foundation, you can find an extremely rare bird (the Pale-headed Brush-Finch) and one of the worlds smallest humming birds.
As I mentioned, much of the food is grown on-site. Dan is an excellent chef – the food we had was varied and delicious.
A Place to Relax
We live in an apartment so walking around a large property with so many plants and flowers was a highlight for our daughter. She also enjoyed walking around the fish pond looking for frogs. On one of our walks it started raining and we discovered that banana plant leaves make perfect umbrellas. We also saw a birds nest made out of mud which looked just like a little mud oven.
We really enjoyed our stay, it was so relaxing. It was nice not to feel pressured to have to do anything. Although it is close to Cuenca it is a different world in the Yunguilla Valley.
The Santuario Hibiscus is a great place to go to get away from the hustle-and-bustle of city life, hide away and just relax. It’s also a great location from which to explore the beautiful Yunguilla Valley. The natural beauty of the Valley is stunning.
Have you stayed at the Santuario Hibiscus? Please tell us what you thought of it, by commenting on this post.