Send this page to a friend

Thank You

Your message has been sent.

You can send this page to up to five email addresses. Please separate each email address with a comma.


Francesca Wade

Advertiser since: 2013
Call Manager
Enter your email address to view the phone number
Speaks: english, spanish
Bedrooms 3
Half Baths1
Property type chateau / country house
Minimum Stay 3 nights

Francesca Wade

Advertiser since: 2013
Speaks: english, spanish
Call Manager
Enter your email address to view the phone number
Book with confidence
Book with confidence
Guaranteed, secure, with no booking fees
Add vacation protection services to your booking
Three services to protect your trip:
Protect your payments in case you need to cancel.
Guarantee the rental meets your expectations
Ensure you're prepared in case of accidental damage.


Bedrooms 3
Half Baths1
Property type chateau / country house
Minimum Stay 3 nights


Lake Atitlan Chateau / Country House Rental Photos and Description

3 Bedrooms, 2.5 Bathrooms, Sleeps 8

You'll relax like royalty in this large triple-terraced home with royal style panoramic views. See the photos and video to understand! Nicknamed 'El Castillo' or 'The Castle', this beautiful lakefront property is situated in a quiet cove with a king's view of mountains, lake, pueblos and volcanoes. The location offers quick access to best swimming, diving, fishing, a myriad of boating activities, hiking, trail running or more relaxing activities like yoga, meditation, healing spas or your best massage ever. The property is very private without being isolated, with a private meditation area, and nearby access to a nature trail and tree swing into the lake. There are breathtaking views from every room, including from the jacuzzi. The caretaker is always discreetly present to assist -- to take you by row boat to San Marcos, to arrange for a private launch trip to one or more of the indigenous villages that ring the lake, to prepare the fireplace.

NEW: We have just finished landscaping the side yard into a grassed and shaded meditation terrace that overlooks the lake and the villages of San Pedro La Laguna and San Juan La Laguna. The tranquility is magnificent.

New Local Events: Lake Atitlan Guatemala: Painters and weavers in San Juan La Laguna, Sololá, directly across the lake fro El Castillo have organized from the collective HEART OF THE LAKE exhibition of painters and weavers for tourists from around the world. Maria Francisca Hernandez, a member of the group, said the exhibition takes account all the inhabitants of the municipality that like and practice the arts, so they formed the organization and opened galleries and schools of painting and weaving. The group is comprised of 33 women who create, exhibit and sell paintings and elaborate gender primitivist -naíf- typical region tissues. The women have received expert advice to improve colors and painting techniques, as well as dyes and quality yarn for fabrics. adding that as well as costumes, draw bags, purses, shoes, bracelets and other accessories.

More Details
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • children welcome
  • non smoking only
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Francesca Wade (Property Manager)
Advertiser since: 2013
Call Manager
Enter your email address to view the phone number
Speaks: english, spanish

About Francesca Wade

El Castillo Tzutujil is a vacation retreat for my husband and me. He is a poet and writer who at 72 thrives in the tranquility of the bay and the house. For me, the opportunity for long hikes and immersion in good books is a dream come true. After years in the business work-a-day world in Arizona, the lake house gives us many wonderful days throughout the year to relax and get in touch with ourselves. In addition, on the Pacific side of the mountains across the lake lies a small indigenous community called Chocolá where we have been working with a U.S. non-profit known as Seeds for a Future to help improve the health and economy of the community. Being close to our work in Chocolá and the people there whom we are lucky to know and be able to help is, an added bonus for us.

2013 will be our 36th year of visiting and living in Guatemala but believe it or not, we only recently really discovered Lake Atitlan and its incredible beauty, lovely people and peaceful surroundings. We were lucky to find this lovely home which we use part of the year and make available to other vacationers when we need to be elsewhere. I am sure you will enjoy the “castle” as much as do we and we encourage you to take opportunities to visit the nearby pueblos around the lake and taste of the art, culture and wonderful food available. Or, if you would rather just kick back on the veranda, be prepared to be enchanted and sink into occasional naps of the best kind.

And please excuse me for tooting the horn of Seeds for the Future, but if you are so inclined you can see what we are doing at or at

Francesca Wade purchased this chateau / country house in 2013

Why Francesca Wade chose Lake Atitlan

We bought this property for many reasons but primarily because it is near (yet apart from) one of the prettiest Maya lakeside communities on Lake Atitlan called San Marcos La Laguna. San Marcos is a magnet for people from around the world seeking the spiritual energy that many believe is there and conducive to learning, meditation and holistic therapies such as massage, yoga, reiki and more. Happily, the village is within easy walking distance of our house or a short boat ride.

San Marcos itself is around a point of land from our house. Near the shoreline are the dwelling of ex-pats and businesses which have established themselves over the years to serve visitors with restaurants, therapy, a holistic center known as the Pyramids Meditation Center and apartments and some retail stores. In addition, San Marcos and the villages across the lake offer excellent dining opportunities not to mention their cultural attractions. San Marcos also has an active program for kids to get involved in theater and the arts. The Maya village itself is above the shore side part of the town and has a wonderful central plaza. Hiking in the forest above San Marcos is a treat.

A most important appeal to us of this property is the fact that it is new, well constructed and situated on what may be the quietist bay of the entire lake. We can sit reading or just enjoying the views for hours with nary a power boat passing within ear shot. And that means being able to listening to nature, the sounds of the lake and birds. On the other side of our bay are majestic rock cliffs and quality homes built on the lower hills and near the water. On our side is a shore level trail that leads to the Village of San Marcos and along the way passes through a delightful water and diving park. The trail is a little challenging, but a wonderful experience. The lake water at San Marcos and in our bay is said to be the cleanest for swimming and kayaking in the entire lake region.

What makes this chateau / country house unique

Aside from what we have said above, the house itself offers lake vistas from every room and magnificent privacy. Each bedroom has its own veranda on the lake side of the house and ceiling to floor windows. To the south side of the house is our pleasant grassy yard made into several terraces which are ideal for quiet afternoons and meditation.

Hammocks make for lazy afternoons and the Jacuzzi is an excellent experience at night while looking at the lights reflecting off the lake from San Pedro and San Juan. Now and then, pyrotechnical displays are observed above the distant towns … (Guatemalans do love fireworks to celebrate national holidays, religious events, birthdays, weddings and maybe just because it seems like a good idea at the time). Another feature we particularly like is the fact that we can watch cumulous storm clouds forming about 40 kilometers away above the Pacific but behind the mountains on the other side of the lake. And because the lake is at roughly 5,000 feet, the distant Pacific coastal storms sometimes provide some of the grandest displays of clouds and lightning.

And for those of you who enjoy more active lifestyle, please see our 'amenities' page which lists all sorts of outdoor activities and night life around the lake. Our concierge in Panachel provdes a constantly updated list of entertainment and recreation activities around the lake.

Guestbook comments from the manager

We had a wonderful time at Earl's place! The house is huge, and even quirkier (in a good way) than we expected. Nicolas, the caretaker, and his family took care of everything we needed, from giving advice to running out to buy us some things in town to lighting a fire for us in the evening. They also had the cutest little puppy named Banano who they were happy to share with us during our stay.

Bonus: the shower was the hottest I've had here in Guatemala.

San Marcos is adorable - definitely one of the cutest little towns I've visited and somewhere we'll be returning. Eat at Fe Restaurant - we loved it so much that we went back something like five times in two days.

Two things: The stairs are very steep, so if you have issues walking, you'll need to have Nicolas bring you into town by boat. For our group of three, however, we just considered it good exercise to walk off all of the delicious food we were eating. The other thing is that the internet dongle didn't work with Yosemite, the latest Mac OS, so if you need internet, that's something to consider as well.

All in all, we had a wonderful time and would 100% recommend the house and the whole experience to anyone.

December 2014
Dec 2014
  • 1 of 3

Why HomeAway

Bedrooms 3
Half Baths1
Property type chateau / country house
Minimum Stay 3 nights
Book with confidence
Book with confidence
Guaranteed, secure, with no booking fees
Add vacation protection services to your booking
Three services to protect your trip:
Protect your payments in case you need to cancel.
Guarantee the rental meets your expectations
Ensure you're prepared in case of accidental damage.


based on 30 traveler reviews

Write a Review
Breathtaking Lakefront Property In Semi-Private Cove
average rating of 4.6666665 based on 33 reviews
Breathtaking Lakefront Property In Semi-Private Cove
+502 -5753-4459
Lake Atitlan Guatemala

Looks nice, not perfect

  • of 5
If you know your way around Guatemala, don't care too much about privacy, don't mind not sleeping late or dogs in and around your vacation house, then you'll have a great time. It's a gorgeous place. You can read about all the amenities. The beds are quality and comfy. I will tell you about the problems.

The caretaker is right there, too close, even for us accustomed to Guatemalan workers. I would like to sleep past 6ish on vacation, or choose when to see the sunrise, but there is nothing to stop the sun from waking you up. Also, the caretaker has 2 dogs who bark and wake you up. One begs and even comes in the house. Most upsetting was the caretaker kicking at the dog, Banano, to make him go away. If you want to go out at night it's a hassle to wake the caretaker and get back in. The info says a maid will clean up every 3 days, we stayed 4 nights and did not get the trashcans emptied or new towels. My last complaint is that it has great balconies but no furniture there for you to enjoy the space.
  • Submitted: Dec 26, 2014
  • Stayed: Dec 2014
  • Source: HomeAway
Breathtaking Lakefront Property In Semi-Private Cove
+502 -5753-4459
Lake Atitlan Guatemala

Thank you for this and the use of the house.

  • 5 of 5
There were 9 of us including the 2 kids and the grandma. It was a very successful visit where I learned more and developed more relations in 2 days than I could in 6 month of emails.
  • Submitted: Sep 15, 2014
  • Stayed: Sep 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Glad your NGO was able to make such good use of our house for your retreat. We too have found it an excellent place for volunteers and staff to get together and brain storm in a relaxed and secluded space. There is something about the Jinava Bay atmosphere, coupled with the tranquil beauty of Lake Atitlan, that inspires creative thinking, team work and a “can do” atmosphere.
Breathtaking Lakefront Property In Semi-Private Cove
+502 -5753-4459
Lake Atitlan Guatemala
Phoenix, AZ, USA

I left my heart in Lake Atitlan

  • 5 of 5
This was literally the best place I have ever traveled. The village of San Carlos is more special than there are words to adequately describe. This home was perfect for us. A short hike to the village and exceptionally well cared for. The caretaker was there for every beck and call we could imagine, and with a smile. Not only from him, but his entire family, genuinely and consistently. The home is beautiful and very roomy with everything you could imagine needing at your fingertips, or at the least, a quick jaunt to the village (internet access). I am already planning my next trip back!
  • Submitted: Jul 26, 2014
  • Stayed: Jun 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Recommended for:  Girls Getaway, Tourists without a Car, Families with Teenagers, Romantic Getaway
Owner's Response: Glad you had such a good time. Let us know when you plan on returning and I'll spread some fresh pain myself. earl
Breathtaking Lakefront Property In Semi-Private Cove
+502 -5753-4459
Lake Atitlan Guatemala
Phoenix, AZ

Such a lovely week at Lake Atitlan!

  • 5 of 5
I would enthusiastically recommend El Castillo at Lake Atitlan! The house is lovely and comfortable, the views from every room are breathtaking and the caretaker and his family are wonderful. It is a very private house, accessible only by boat or a pretty strenuous hike up to the village of San Marcos.

It is a most relaxing vacation spot with everything you could ever need including delicious meals prepared by Rosa, internet, a friendly dog and views that are unmatched!

The village is tiny and lovely. Everything you need is there and it has a very mellow vibe. There are some great restaurants and fun shopping. From there you can travel to other lakeside villages via tuk tuk or you can hire a boat to take you exploring.

We loved Nikolas and Rosa and their family who live on the property and care of you and the house. They brought fresh water, cooked meals when we wanted them, helped us connect to wifi, hired transportation, even got us change for our dollars!

This is a special place, such beauty, filled with lovely people and wonderful places to visit.

Do yourself a favor - go to the lake and stay in El Castillo, you will be so glad you did!
  • Submitted: Jul 24, 2014
  • Stayed: Jun 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Recommended for:  Adventure Seekers, Pet-friendly, Girls Getaway, Tourists without a Car, Sightseeing, Families with Teenagers, Families with Young Children, Romantic Getaway
Owner's Response: We are delighted that you had such a lovely time and that our staff met your every need. We have worked hard to make the place as you fond it and ever making improvements for our guests. Don't you just love Guatemala? Thanks again.
Breathtaking Lakefront Property In Semi-Private Cove
+502 -5753-4459
Lake Atitlan Guatemala
St. Paul, Minnesota, USA

Best wind chimes!

  • 5 of 5
A great place to stay in a beautiful setting. My wife and I were able to put other thoughts aside and simply focus on the beauty and variety of Lake Atitlan and the nearby communities. the weather was excellent: mild & hazy in the mornings, pleasant and sunny the rest of the day. We could just relax on the veranda and listen to the wind chimes in the garden, or it was easy to get a tuk-tuk to a nearby village or take a launch to one of the larger towns on the lake. We walked up the steps, a bit of good exercise, and then down the hill to San Marcos; just a short distance to boat access, a variety of restaurants, and stores that sell groceries and other things you might want. With another of our party we rode in a 3-wheeled tuk-tuk to a village nearby, not a tourist destination at all but a wonderful quiet scene where we could see Easter processions. On another day we took a boat across the lake to a larger town with many jewelry sellers, restaurants, kayaks for rent, volcano tours, etc. It was nice to have a quiet base to return to, and then a good dinner at the restaurant of the hotel on an adjoining property. Good curries! A hammock in the Minnesota summer can be a nice place to read a book, but a hammock near the shore of Lake Atitlan, with great wind chimes just up the hill behind you, is something special.
  • Submitted: May 21, 2014
  • Stayed: Apr 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Recommended for:  Age 55+, Adventure Seekers, Girls Getaway, Tourists without a Car, Sightseeing
Breathtaking Lakefront Property In Semi-Private Cove
+502 -5753-4459
Lake Atitlan Guatemala

Wonderful relaxing retreat for the entire family

  • 4 of 5
Our party of seven - four adults and three teenage girls- had a wonderful time at this property. Having the property manager and his family onsite added a great deal to our trip, as he was able to help us with whatever we needed and showed us how to get to town, where to buy food and where to eat. He also showed us where we could rent kayaks and cliff dive. The girls were all studying Spanish so it was a fabulous educational experience for them. That is key - someone in the group should know some Spanish as the property manager and his family don't speak English (he speaks three local languages in addition to Spanish. Spanish as a second, third or fourth language is fairly typical around the lake).

Other than a horseback ride the day of our arrival, we didn't have much planned beyond lounging about and enjoying the water and the views. We swam, snorkeled, rented kayaks and the men of the party tried to fish. The house was clean and comfortable, perfect for our large party. There was an occasional spider, which is to be expected in that part of the world.

It was the oldest girl's 19th birthday and the family was such a big part of making it a success. He ordered a beautiful cake and his wife cooked a superb meal from the list of items she told us to buy. Because it was a party, we invited them to celebrate with us and again, it was an opportunity to bridge cultures and make friends despite a language barrier.

We felt safe in the area and enjoyed being close enough to San Marcos to walk into town when we needed to, and far enough away that we had our own private paradise. Note - walking into town does demand a bit of physical fitness and mobility. The short way includes a fairly challenging uphill climb and the long way is and adventurous path along the lakeshore.

The concierge service is extremely helpful and if you need to talk to them, just ask Nicholas to call them from his phone.

Why I didn't give 5 stars: The internet wasn't working when we were there but they are working on fixing that. There is wifi in town, which is a great excuse to find a nice cafe, have a beer and catch the local scene.

Keep in mind - Guatemala is a developing country which can present some travel challenges and discomforts for those used to conveniences. It also allows for amazing learning opportunities for those open to adventure. Enjoy!
  • Submitted: Apr 13, 2014
  • Stayed: Mar 2014
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Recommended for:  Adventure Seekers, Tourists without a Car, Sightseeing, Families with Teenagers, Romantic Getaway
Owner's Response: We're glad you had such a wonderful time and that you enjoyed the help and friendship Nicolas and Rosa offered. It is particularly nice to hear how your teenage daughters enjoyed their cross-cultural experience.

The house is now equipped with 2 tigo USB pre-pay modems which give excellent service. Our "Tips for Guests" book explains about giving Nicolas money to prepay in San Marcos, and how to select a Tigo Plan for using the money deposited. Q75 will pay for a Week's plan.


Nearest Airport
108.5 Miles
Guatamala City (plus regional in Quetzaltenango)
Nearest Barpub
0.5 Miles
Blind Lemon, Fe, Jinava Bay Hotel, Paco Real
Nearest Ferry
0.8 Miles
San Marcos to anywhere on the lake
Nearest Golf
95 Miles
Nearest Motorway
10 Miles
CA 1
Nearest Restaurant
0.1 Miles
Jinava plus many more in San Marcos
Nearest Beach
50 Miles
Many on Pacific & Crystal beach on lake (1K)
Car: not necessary

The village of San Marcos La Laguna is famous for its holistic and meditation centers but even more so for its relaxed, low pressure atmosphere. It has a lovely shaded central park and a band shell for locally produced music and plays. Trails and a local lake along the lake are available. Our caretaker will arrange for a launch to pick you up at our dock and take you anywhere on the lake.

The entire lake and the villages around San Marcos are accessible via inexpensive 'bus launches' that run throughout the day every 20 minutes. A road north from the village leads to Quetzaltenango and the many historic archaeological sites of that region. Quetzaltenango is a university city and a historic gate way to Mexico.

The major town of Panajchel on the lake is loaded with quality restaurants, night life, grocery stores and other urban attractions, but San Marcos itself is a lovely, quiet family friendly town.

Across our end of the lake are the villages of San Pedro and San Juan which are delightful towns filled with interesting visitor attractions, casual sight seeing walks and good restaurants and cooperatives of artisans. Further away is the famous village of Santiago Atitlan which attracts visitors from around the world for its sights, arts, weaving, woodcarving and entertainment.

Finally, one can tour the highlands of Guatemala from the Lake and visit such exotic places as Solola, Chichicastenango and the ancient pre-classic and classic era Maya ruins of Ixchimche, Zacaleu, Takalik Abaj. To the northwest is the large hot springs of Fuentes Georginas which is open to the public and situated in a delightful cloud forest. It is quite a treat to float in the hot waters while watching clouds swirl through the trees above. In the nearby valley is the village of Zunil where shrines to Maximon can be visited. The vegetable market in Almalonga is one of the very best in all of the highlands.

Our local manager in Panajachel can arrange all travel and accommodations for you if you are interested in some side trips around or away from the lake. A new attraction is a butterfly arboretum has opened in Panajachel Dec 2013

NEWS! Feb 1, A new butterfly named Pan Ajachel was discovered by staff Atitlan Nature Reserve in Panajachel, Solola. that scientists believe could only have developed in the climate and ambience of Panajachel. The butterfly lays eggs in matasano plant, which each holds its metamorphosis.

Carlos Eduardo Paez, Reserve Entomologist said that identifying the new species took several years of study on wing and other characteristics such as flying habits, food and way of playing. Paez said that this lepidopteran belongs to the Papilionidae family, subfamily and Heraclides. The caterpillars of this butterfly feed on a fruit called matasano (ajachel Cakchiquel), whose scientific name is Casimiroa edulis, a tree well known in the Lake. The insects lay their eggs on this plant.

Paez said they will take their data to laboratories in England, Switzerland or the United States, where before accepting it as new, worldwide data bases will be checked.

A special treat coming up is to be at Lake Atitlan in the weeks and days leading up to Easter (Semana Santa) when street processions, art, religious ceremonies and music flower in extraordinary ways. Our house at San Marcos is within a short walk or boat ride to some of the most fascinating Maya towns in all of Guatemala such as San Marcos, San Pedro and San Juan.


Rates & Availability

From $79 Per night

Lake Atitlan Chateau / Country House Rental Rates

Rental Basis:
Per property
Rental rates quoted in:
Convert Currency
Rate Period Nightly Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event
Easter Month
Mar 16 2015 - Apr 20 2015
3 night minimum stay
Notes: Rates are based on 2 guests; add $20 per night, per additional guest
My Standard Rate
3 night minimum stay
Notes: Rates are based on 2 guests; add $20 per night, per additional guest

Additional information about rental rates

Check-Out Cleaning $20
Refundable damage deposit $300
2. A one-time check-out cleaning fee of $20.00 per stay will be applied to all stays.
3. Transportation to and from the property by water taxi is not included. We can provide estimates at time of booking.

Cancellation Policy

100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.


Lake Atitlan Chateau / Country House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • chateau / country house
  • Catering available
  • Breakfast - Booking Possible
  • Lunch - Booking Possible
  • Dinner - Booking Possible
Location Type:
  • Lake View
  • Lakefront
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Romantic
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Fireplace ...
  • Internet ...
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking ...
  • Telephone ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Washing Machine ...
  • Wood Stove ...
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave ...
  • Oven ...
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove ...
  • Toaster
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 6 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • 1 Half Bath
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , combination tub/shower
    Bathroom 2 - toilet , shower
    Bathroom 3 - toilet
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 8
  • Master - 1 king , panoramic bay window view of lake and access to terrace
    Guest - 2 queen , View of lake, access to terrace, private bathroom
    Eagle's Nest - 1 queen , Private terrace looking directly on lake
  • Books
  • Stereo ...
  • Toys ...
  • Balcony ...
  • Bicycles ...
  • Boat ...
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Outdoor Grill
  • Water Sports Gear ...
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • children welcome
  • non smoking only ...
  • wheelchair inaccessible
Pool / Spa:
  • Communal Pool ...
  • Hot Tub ...
Onsite Services:
  • Staff
  • botanical garden
  • churches
  • health/beauty spa
  • library
  • live theater
  • marina
  • museums
  • playground
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • water parks
  • zoo
Leisure Activities:
  • bird watching
  • boating
  • eco tourism
  • horseback riding
  • scenic drives
  • shopping
  • sight seeing
  • walking
  • wildlife viewing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • fitness center
  • groceries
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • basketball court
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • hiking
  • jet skiing
  • kayaking
  • mountain biking
  • mountain climbing
  • mountaineering
  • paragliding
  • parasailing
  • pier fishing
  • rock climbing
  • sailing
  • scuba diving or snorkeling
  • snorkeling
  • snorkeling/diving
  • swimming
  • water skiing
  • water tubing
Canoe for 3-4 people or a dug-out kayak are available for touring the lake. Fishing and crabbing with caretaker can be arranged any day you would like. There is great cliff diving and sunbathing from the 'Trampoline' located 5-10 minutes east along the shoreline. I suggest you check out the TzanK'ujil Nature Trail (5 min east) and hike to the top of the mountain to the sacred Mayan ceremonial area. There is also a wonderful little restaurant less than 100 yards west of the property. There are restaurants, massage spas, natural health centers in nearby San Marcos village and at most of the villages around the lake there are great opportunities for shopping, dining, tours, cultural experiences and socializing.

Contact the Manager

Tell the manager when you would like to travel.

Tell us about your trip, then book it

Enter dates to calculate a quote