Welcome to the enchanting story of Mandála!

We are Maja, from Switzerland, and Aurelio, from Italy. Our journey began in 1991 on Isabela Island, Galápagos, where Aurelio ran a small inn. In 1998, we purchased this beautiful 7350m2 beachfront property in the Machalilla National Park area with the dream of creating a peaceful retreat. At the time, the entire area was submerged under three meters of water due to the El Niño floods. Before construction, we had to fill the land with 3500 truckloads of backfill material. In February 1999, we started receiving guests with just three double cabins. Over the next five years, we worked tirelessly, bringing in soil, leaves, rice husks, and coffee to cultivate the garden.

Gradually, with the help of the local community of Agua Blanca and the surrounding area, we built the Hostería as it stands today. Our vision was to create a natural sanctuary, eschewing air conditioning and televisions, and instead focusing on spacious, bright, and tranquil spaces. We put great effort into crafting a botanical garden with hundreds of plant and flower species, teeming with wildlife like birds and iguanas.

Mandála lies within the “dry equatorial forest” ecosystem, which means water is scarce. To address this, we collect water from the Ayampe River, 22 km away, using a tanker and have installed a sophisticated wastewater treatment system with bacteria and forced aeration to recycle all water used in the kitchen, laundry, and showers. Hence, we don’t have a swimming pool but instead opted to plant palm trees along the beach and construct cozy cabins for guests to unwind and hang hammocks.

Our goal was to blend nature and art harmoniously. All the materials used and the workforce come entirely from the local area. We support various social projects and the Marine Wildlife Rehabilitation Center of the National Park.

Mandála boasts numerous structures, including the main building, a three-story house divided into three independent apartments for long-term rentals, 10 individual cabins for two guests, and six constructions, each with 2 to 4 attached cabins, totaling 15 additional cabins. Additionally, there are various storage rooms and nurseries.

The main feature is a harmonious structure immersed in lush nature, with flowers, plants, birds, and iguanas right at the ocean’s edge. The attention to detail and artistry is evident in every aspect, reflecting the Hostería Mandála’s motto of “nature and art.”

Given its strategic location, Mandála doesn’t have an indoor swimming pool due to its proximity to the beach. Instead, we provide beach chairs and large parasols for guests. Moreover, the cabins are designed to be naturally ventilated and thermally protected by the surrounding forest, negating the need for air conditioning. Each cabin comes with individual bathrooms and hot water, as well as ceiling and pedestal fans. Additionally, they all have spacious terraces with wicker chairs, hammocks, and reliable Wi-Fi connectivity.

The main building houses the Hostería’s reception, a spacious restaurant, and a bar with a large terrace on the first floor. It also features restrooms for both men and women and shelves filled with games in different languages. The first floor also accommodates a well-organized, extensive kitchen equipped with refrigerators, freezers, and everything necessary for excellent service. Adjacent to the kitchen, there is a medium-sized storage room for supplies and continuous use. Connected to this kitchen are two more storage rooms—one large room for beverages, a grease separator for kitchen wastewater, a pump feeding an emergency cistern on the third floor in case of any failure in the main autoclave system, which supplies the entire property with water. This autoclave system, pressure pump, large sediment filters, and massive (one-and-a-half-meter tall) silicone filters for scale removal are housed in the second storage room, which also contains the staff restroom and changing area.

On the second floor, there is a spacious lounge with a large television, shelves filled with books in six languages, additional games, and various musical instruments available for guests’ use. This floor also has bathrooms with showers for men and women, a security room with individual safes for each of the 26 cabins, and plenty of wicker chairs throughout. The same floor houses an office and a spare parts room for frequent use.

The third floor is a bright and airy space, thanks to transparent acrylic sections on the roof and continuous windows. It primarily serves as a hub for the numerous musical instruments available to guests. The wooden floor is designed with various labyrinthine patterns and a large hopscotch layout. This floor also boasts several fixed planters with a collection of succulent plants, two acoustic sound panels, and an assortment of instruments used in whale hunting.

Behind the main building, there is a large semi-buried water reservoir of over 36 cubic meters. Above this reservoir, one side houses a spacious games room with billiards, foosball, air hockey, and Colombian frog. On the other side, you’ll find the laundry room with industrial dryers and washers, as well as the linen and towel storage area.

The property features a large park and a covered area for eight cars, along with open parking space for many more vehicles. Further along is a comprehensive wastewater treatment system that practically recycles and directs all used water to the garden, concealed entirely underground. Towards the back, there is another substantial underground cistern, approximately 28m2 in size, used for garden irrigation. Above this cistern, two open spaces serve as a garden tool area and a larger meeting space, known as the “hammock area,” where occasional yoga classes or workshops take place.

Adjacent to this area is a nursery for growing plants and two small storage rooms, one for general maintenance and the other for electric tools.

It’s challenging to describe all that Mandála offers materially, as there are countless amenities. Additionally, there are facilities for people with disabilities, including ramps, specific bathrooms, and cabins specially designed for them. The process of washing the silicone filters for scale removal is also worth mentioning.

Mandála’s true essence, its soul, was built over 25 years of continuous operation (except for the pandemic-induced pause) and through countless positive reviews on platforms like TripAdvisor and Booking. The guestbooks, filled with comments and stories, also bear witness to this journey. Equally important is our excellent relationship with the town of Puerto López and its authorities, established through numerous social activities and projects, such as planting palm trees on the beach and creating and donating works of art like the entire whale skeleton, the obelisk of dolphins, and the tree of the world, which can be admired in various Mandála videos.

Mandála is a renowned inn, well-known internationally, with a vast network of loyal guests and enthusiasts, along with long-standing collaborations with both national and foreign agencies.

Although we have closed the restaurant, which enjoyed over 22 years of acclaim, we continue to offer breakfast service. We have decided to sell Mandála after 25 years of dedication to the project, as it goes without saying that we are no longer as young and energetic as we once were. We hope that the new custodians will appreciate the spirit of Mandála and carry on its legacy, further evolving the enchanting haven we have lovingly crafted.

Property Details:

  • Bedrooms: 29
  • Bathrooms: 29
  • Stoves: 3
  • Refrigerators: 12
  • Fully furnished
  • Construction dates: 1998-2002 (remodeled in 2016)
  • Land area: 7350m2 (79,195 sq. ft)
  • Total construction area: 2170m2 (23,358 sq. ft)
  • Amazing beach access and ocean views

Please don’t hesitate to explore the videos and drone footage showcasing the magical Hostería Mandála, a thriving establishment that has been captivating guests for almost 25 years. If you wish to inherit this remarkable legacy, “as is,” along with the freedom to leave your mark, the opportunity is yours to seize.