Location is Good, But...
Location to the main square we good. The inside was clean and well kept and it was good to be in relative walking distance to most things but there are a number of decision points that should be considered before renting this place. The top 5 are:
1.What are you looking for in a kitchen? This place is set up like most hotel kitchenettes that I have booked. Some individual items had issues and after speaking with the owner I believe they will be dealt with. Note there is only a cooktop and not an oven (other than toaster) Kitchen did not have running hot water (be design) but that might be addressed as well. Some discrepancies related to website description and that is also being addressed.
2.Sleeping arrangements. The bed is actually quite comfortable but do take note that the bedroom has two glass block skylights that let in sun early in the morning. Only an issue if morning light wakes you.
3.The only washroom on the main floor is through the bedroom, so if you have visitors they will need to go through there.
4.Noise is a factor. This house is on two very busy streets and traffic can be heard consistently even with windows closed. There is a speed bump outside the living room, which announces every vehicle going by. With the windows open it was hard to hear the ipod player except at high volume.
5.Outdoor sun space is almost non existant. There is a plunge pool that takes up most of the open yard. There might be room for a couple of simple metal chairs to sit in the sun but not comfortably.
There are two lounge chairs, which are nice to sit on but require that you face the pool from a covered area that is a converted parking space. So if it’s a nice day you do have shade but won’t be able to tan easily unless you sit in or beside the pool.
Overall, when reviewing the options, next time I would ask more direct questions of other places to confirm their setup but there are a number of hotels that do have kitchens and large pools and are less expensive to stay at and I will also consider that option. I also can’t see this as a place I would go to with more than two people. There is an ample dining room set up but the living room has only one large couch and out door space is minimal. We were ‘fortunate’ that it was mainly cloudy the time we were there and the outside space wasn’t as critical.
Tourists without a Car,
Owner's Response: Thank you for your review John, I’ll address each point.
1. Yes, the kitchen has a 4-burner cook top, a toaster oven, microwave--and a Barbeque! Water from the solar heated roof-top storage tank usually provides naturally heated water to the sink. But it's less effective on cloudy days. However an on-demand supply of hot water is planned at the sink--for tea drinkers, more than anything. The web page is updated periodically and it really helps to hear feedback, though minor, personal preferences are rarely publicly helpful.
2. Yes, the main bedroom has wonderful morning light! If this is not your personal preference, it is a simple matter to block it with panels on the roof. Please just ask!
3. Yes, the house is designed to be open with double-doors in the main bedroom as part of the living space where your guests can use the bath.
4. Some notice street sounds more than others. Each year we work on adding sound deadening features to the home. Leaving windows and colonial doors open however defeats any sound dampening elements. The wall fountain in the living area is designed to be both decorative and functional to help cancel noise.
5. There is a spiral stair case to the roof. This is where we catch the sun. If the lounge chairs were not up there, please ask management to move them. A roof-top garden is planned here too.
Choosing to stay a Colonial home over a hotel can be an exciting, adventurous experience. Most guests report the benefits of value over a room in a hotel including privacy, deep relaxation, additional space and the opportunity to feel what it is to live like a local. But it is not for everyone. It does not include the services or attention that you would expect of a hotel…unless of course you ask! Of course depending on the length of your stay, we may not be able to compete with the room price of a hotel, but then when traveling with friends it's a no-brainer.
Living at Casa La Barenda is designed to be a simple, rustic experience with emphasis on living life. The casa is suited to providing comfortable and basic needs. You might however experience elements of the home and local living that could either add to the charm or distract depending on your disposition or cultural bias.
As owner of Casa La Barenda, I want you to have a good time. It is far more important for me to make a good match than it is for me to just fill vacancies. The best place to start is by asking me questions.
Helpful votes: 4/4
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