Tell us about your visit:
Review submitted by Alan from Loja, Ecuador (Submitted: 15 Jan 2013)
Its easy to get Taxi outside the property any time, even at early hours. Was charged by the property owners father USD40 to sent me to the airport at early hours. , He have to come from his home, near the airport to collect the key from me but the normal cost by taxi is USD5 only, buyers beware!!! Otherwise its a good deal, not cheap.
Review submitted by Julie from Mill Creek, WA (Submitted: 20 Mar 2012)
The apartment had all the basic amenities needed while staying in Quito. The hosts were fabulous and most lovely to help with transportation, getting some groceries due to a late arrival, and most resourceful for knowing Quito and advising well on locations and safety. Their support and service were wonderful. The apartment is simple, but well located and had everything we needed to feel at home. The hot water was a bit challenging, but did work. The apartment is located on a hill, which is common for the old city. The hill is very managable, but one should be prepared to handle this with the high altitude. The apartment is recommended for those who have a budget and want the amenties of home while traveling in Quito !!
Review submitted by Robb from Neptune, NJ (Submitted: 20 Jan 2012)
Thje property is a clean, comfortable rental in a nice old town location. What makes it exceptional is the family that owns it. They are the nicest, most friendly, helpful people you could possibly imagine! There was a minor problem with the property when we arrived, they all bent over backwards to make things right! They alos picked us up at the airport, and showed us around the town., They made our time in Quito memorable! It was a great value and a pleasant apartment for sure, but the owners made it special!
Review submitted by Eva from Pittsburgh (Submitted: 2 Dec 2011)
Overall the location was convenient and the guards at the apartment complex helpful. The apartment is a short walk to Quitos centre
however the return back can be daunting as it is a steep hill- still if you find yourself too tired you can always catch a cab- only a dollar!
Overall the place had all the amenities that one would need for an extended stay.
Now the cons- upon checking in everything appeared to be fantastic- however after discovering that the floor had some sort of black soot on it- my kids socks were black ,not kidding here. Then the science experiment brewing in the coffee maker (read: we wanted to make coffee opened the coffee maker and there was mold and other gunk in the filter along with old coffee grinds- GROSS!) -we kinda were glad that we were only sleeping and showering there.
Upon sharing this with the older couple upon check out the woman blamed it on her granddaughter staying there.....how is this
solving my issue with mold and crap in a coffee maker and soot on the floors? I at the very least would have expected them to try to compensate-
however they still required the 35 dollar cleaning fee- which is ridiculous if you ask me.
So I can only vouch for the convenience of the place- and that it was equipped as described.
Review submitted by Janice from Shipman, VA (other guests from Seattle, WA) (Submitted: 5 Apr 2011)
Balcon de la Cuena is an excellent choice and a great value for Quito. Located in an historic district neighborhood just a couple of blocks from the main plaza, staying here gives you a perfect blend of convenience and getting a true feel for the city. The area and apartment felt very safe, and we enjoyed seeing the school children in the mornings and afternoons, and buying groceries at the small mercados on the street. The apartment is spacious and well-appointed and was very comfortable for 2 couples. Two cell phones, a laptop and internet access were provided, a big plus. Best of all is the personal service of the family that owns the apartment, who made us feel like family members, checked in on us, and provided invaluable tips about Quito and surrounding areas. We would stay again at this apartment without hesitation.
Thank you for the wonderful comments, I'm glad you enjoyed your stay!
Review submitted by Sue from Chicago (Submitted: 25 Mar 2011)
We spent a week in this apartment in Colonial Quito and enjoyed our stay. Hilda and Daniel were waiting for us upon our arrival and were available and helpful throughout our entire stay. The apartment is large and well equipped - there were no surprises. The only negative to the apartment was the lack of hot water for showers. Having a washer and dryer, internet access a laptop and cell phones to use while in town were most appreciated. We enjoyed the neighborhood and were able to walk many of the places we wanted to go. I would recommend this apartment and would definitely stay here again when we return to Quito.
Review submitted by Rhonda from Abbotsford (Submitted: 20 Dec 2010)
The apartment was well kept and had sufficient bedding and linens. The beds were comfortable and we enjoyed having the washer/dryer to wash our clothes before heading to the Galopagos. We would recommend the apartment to anyone wanting a place to stay in the historical district of Quito. We were treated very well by the family that we were renting the apartment from and were very happy with the time that they took for us.
Review submitted by Sara from Plymoth (Submitted: 26 Sep 2010)
This was our first time in Ecuador. We loved colonial Quito where the apartment was located. We were greeted by the owners father whom showed us how to get in ect .The apartment was in a great place to get around. It is on a hill but no problems and it was a beautiful view.We took a yellow cab to a park accros town and it was $5.00 it seems to be standard fare unless you get lucky and get a (yellow )cab driver who has a meter and then it is only $1.60.
The apartment had everything you would need,kitchen, microwave,refig, T.V. living room and full bathroom with laundry all on first floor. second floor had 3 bedrooms and full bath. It is updat ed and very clean.There were 2 couples staying here and this apartment was large enough to provide privacy and comfort
If Colonial Quito is of interest to you I recommend Balcon de la Cuenca
Review submitted by John from Williamsfield Ohio (Submitted: 13 Sep 2010)
The apartment is charming in every way. The beds are extremely comfortable. The second floor location make the balcony a perfect spot to enjoy your morning coffee while watching Ecuadorians walking down the cobblestone street. The location is within walking distance to town and the people along the way were all very friendly.
What really makes this apartment memorable is the the folks who run it. Youre treated not as a paying customer but as a guest of the family. They gave us a cell phone with preset numbers to reach them if we had difficulties during our stay and stressed that offer was not limited to apartment functions.
We took full advantage of the additional services offered. We were meet at the airport at 1:30 am( 2 hours late) and brought to the airport at 4:00am. I highly recommend hiring the translator/tourguide if youre not Spanish speaking. Having a bi-lingual person with a strong knowledge of the ways and customs was a huge asset to a wonderful vacation !!!
Review submitted by Douglas from Santa Cruz, CA (Submitted: 22 Jun 2010)
We stayed at the Balcon in June 2010 for a week to attend my sons college graduation in Quito. My son has lived in Ecuador for five years and remarked that the Balcon was the best accommodation for the money anywhere in Quito. You are just up the hill (a nice hike down but you do have to walk back up) from the Plaza Grande, and around the corner from the Basilica. The apartment/condo was perfect. Three large bedrooms with everyone a family needs to make themselves at home. The kitchen was fully outfitted and they even provide cell phones. Do not stay at a hotel, hostel, or B&B, when you can make a home at the Balcon. The owner and her mother were helpful and gracious. When we return next year from a wedding with the host family we will be staying at the Balcon.
Review submitted by k from bay area, california (Submitted: 1 Jun 2010)
I would recommend this with some cautions. A friend rented this. My first thought on entering the property was that it was really nice.
However, the lack of hot water on 2 of the 3 nights we were there made this a lot less fun. Also, there werent sufficient blankets so we were cold. That said, if you make sure they turn on the hot water in advance (we didnt think to check) and remind them to give you enough blankets (again, we didnt think to check) you should be okay.
The guards at this complex are really nice and helped us with everything. The apartment itself has 4 bedrooms and 2 baths, and is big enough for a large group if necessary.
We spent a LOT of time dealing with the owners, trying to get the hot water working, etc. We probably spent 6 hours over three days trying to contact them, then working with them to get things working correctly. It was a pain, to say the least.
So I was a bit disappointed by the owners, who werent willing to take responsibility for any of these issues. (Though, they did keep apologizing.) That said, we wanted cheap, safe lodging and this fit the bill. Also, even though I didnt get much sleep (given I was up until 1am because the maintenance guy was there), its not like I really had plans at that hour, anyhow....
Bottom line - you should be just fine, as long as you remember to ask about EVERYTHING. For example, some of the charges quoted changed on me, too - prices which I had understood to be for the entire party ended up being per person. (I thought I had clarified up front, but somehow there was a misunderstanding.)
The lodging itself is in a nice location.
In Reply to this review from K from Bay Area, California
For starters, I would like to state that even though the apartment has 4 bedrooms, I do only list it as 3. So to say that the apartment has 4 bedrooms is a misrepresentation on your part.
I would like to submit a copy of the email I sent your friend,
"I just spoke to my parents and they informed me about the mishap with the electricity in the apartment. I would like to first of all apologize for any inconvenience you and your party may have had. I know it is difficult for many travelers to understand how different from the United States a country like Ecuador is, as you must of experienced traveling through Otavalo an the Galapagos, the comforts we are use to in the States is not what we typically find in a city like Quito or any third world city. It is unfortunate that you and your party had this unfortunate incident, and for the future I have to make my renters aware that in a renovated Colonial building as is El Balcon, the electrical system is somewhat antiquated and delicate and can not handle, too many electrical appliances on at one time. For convenience the water heaters for each bathroom, washer,dryer and kitchen appliances are electric, and when too many of these appliances are used all at once caused power surge, which caused the main circuit breaker to go off, (the reason why you had no electricity for one of the 4 nights you were in the apartment)
I hope that the problem was taken care in a timely manor and with as little conflict as possible.
Once again hope this was not a great inconvenience and that aside from this unfortunate incident, you found your stay at Balcon de la Cuenca satisfactory.
As I explained in the email the reason you had a problem with the electricity is because if you are using the electric water heaters for the 2 showers, running the washer and dryer, and other small appliances it was too much of an overload and the main circuit breaker went off, leaving half the complex with no electricity as well.
I have been renting my apartment since 04/06 and have never had this type of review. Again I am sorry the lodging was not to your expectations, and I will address your other concerns, blankets. As far as the extra charges, I would like to what these were, as I am unaware of the charges you are talking about.
Review not verified by RentalSystems* (Submitted: 9 Apr 2010)
El departamento es muy acogedor, está equipado con todo lo que se necesita en la vida cotidiana, fue más cómodo que llegar a un hotel. Las personas que lo rentaron estuvieron todo el tiempo a pendiente de nosotros y siempre fueron muy amables. Altamente recomendable.
Review submitted by Dorothy from Chicago (Submitted: 4 Sep 2009)
I recently stayed here with my sister while we were in Quito, and I was more than satisfied with my stay. The apartment is huge, and with four bedrooms, it really is a great deal, especially for groups. I was greeted by the owners, who were so friendly and helpful in getting us settled. The apartment is spacious and clean, with a nicely furnished dining/kitchen/living area that included a TV with DVD player and a washer/dryer. (Also in response to a previous post, there was an ironing board and iron!) The surrounding neighborhood felt very safe, and in addition, the apartment has an alarm system and 24 hour doorman. The building also has a great view overlooking the city. It is located very close to small fruit/food shops and a bakery that were convenient for late night snacks. It is in the historic area of Quito and so really close to a lot of cathedrals and squares (as well as internet cafes, restaurants, etc) and quieter at night. The comfort and privacy was most appreciated. I would highly recommend Balcon de la Cuenca to others.
Review submitted by Robert from Dallas, TX USA (Submitted: 29 Jul 2009)
The Owner and her local relatives, go out of their way to make your stay pleasant and try their best to resolve any issues. Nicely furnished and equipped apartment at a good price (negotiated). If you want to stay near the historical "old town", then this makes a good choice.
Review submitted by Barbara from Connellsville PA USA (Submitted: 6 Mar 2009)
My husband and I stayed here for 19 days, excluding a trip to the Galapagos Islands. Overall, we were very satisfied with our stay. A few minor things could be done to improve the property, although I know they sound picky. A railing at the top of the stairs would help a portable heater would be nice (it got pretty cold at night) cable TV would help to keep in touch with the world the water was never actually hot, just lukewarm. Good things: decently equiped kitchen (we cooked all breakfasts and lunches and most dinners, so that was important) comfortable furniture nice dark room for sleeping lots of covers. On the negative side, the walk UP the hill to the apartment was not easy for two late middle-aged Americans. We did do it several times, but mostly gave in to laziness and got a cab. Also, it was rather far away from any decent sized grocery store. We had to take cabs to the Supermaxi and then bring groceries back in another cab. Ignore all the whines and complaints! This was a good place to stay. Its great having the privacy and the room to spread out. So much better than staying in a hotel. The host family was very nice, checking in every few days to see if all was OK. They also provided two cell phones for our use, which was great, as we did not take phones with us. We are usually very much "budget" travelers, so this was a real luxury for us.
Review submitted by Paula from Dundas (Submitted: 7 Jan 2009)
Balcon de la Cuenca is within easy walking distance to the heart of Colonial Quito, where history remains vital in small shops, museums and breath-taking cathedrals. Streets are paved with brick, and narrow sidewalks reminded me of a rugged mountain path. There is an uphill climb to return to the condo, which I enjoyed for the exercise, but taxis are plentiful if you prefer to pay two dollars for a ride home. The interior of Balcon de la Cuenca is modest, tasteful and homey. With a full kitchen, living room, dining area and 3 bedrooms, it is neat, clean and comfortable to lounge in, to have guests over, or whatever you desire. The building is very secure, so safety was not a concern. I felt well cared for by the owner, and by her parents, as they checked-in on us during our stay in Quito, and it was an easy transition to the culture to be collected at the airport and delivered to the condo our first night in Ecuador. I would definitely recommend Balcon de la Cuenca to a friend for size, comfort, security and value.
Review submitted by Donna from Mareitta, GA (Submitted: 5 Nov 2008)
Our family (my parents - in their 60s, my boys - 12 and 9 and I) had a great trip to Quito on November 1st-4th, 2008! We stayed at Balcon de la Cuenca. The owners parents picked us up at the airport and checked us in to the apartment. The entrance to the complex was gated with a 24 hour guard/security. We were given two cell phones to use while in Ecuador and we were even able to call the USA for very little. There was a small convenience store one block up the street for snacks and drinks. We found it was safe to walk down to the Plaza de la Independencia and around the Old Town. We did always take a taxi back from that area since it was a steep walk back for about $1 or $2US. We ate breakfast at the Hotel Plaza Grande which was on the Independence Plaza. We arranged for tours at the hotel. . They took us to El Panecillo Hill, Inti-Ñan Museum (the real equator and museum), Teleferiqo (aerial tram, on the skirt of the Rucu Pichincha volcano) and a walking tour of the Old Town. We ate at Vista Hermosa that had a beautiful view at the top of the restaurant. We would highly recommend this apartment for security, location to all the walking activities in Old Town, the convenience of airport pick up and return and the friendliness of the local family who checked in on us daily using the cell phones. We will definitely visit Quito again - it is clean, safe, friendly and easy to get to!
Review submitted by Daiv from Jacksonville, Fl USA (Submitted: 29 Sep 2008)
The property was in excellent shape and clean. The location was perfect for our stay near the colonial downtown not the tourist area. It was appointed with a fair size kitchen, 4 bedrooms and a living area albeit a bit on the spartan side. It was near many churches, museums and points of interest and was close to an excellent hotel to start many of our day tours. However a few things would turn this property into a superlative choice. Internet access, cable tv and washer dryer access. No iron or ironing board althought the property advertised one. My Spanish got better watching an new tv with only Spanish programs, but one English speaking channel like CNN wouldve been fine. I certainly would have paid more to have either cable TV or more importantly internet access even for a fee. The internet cafe wasn too far away but the convenience of having it in the apartment wouldve been a very welcome addition to keeping us in touch. The owners provided two cellphones which were an excellent and welcome touch, and proved to be a very valuable tool for calling taxis and tours. There was only two of us but we were initially locked out of 2 of the bedrooms as the owners caretakers didnt understand why we needed access to rooms we werent sleeping in. (Um ,we were paying for the WHOLE condo and didnt want to trip over all our luggage, souvenirs and dirty laundry). That was rectified with a phone call and they checked in on us periodically to see if we needed anything and to ask about our stay. Overall the stay was very pleasant and a good value and we were well looked after, but some more decoration to warm the space up and providing more western conviences will turn this place in a top contender as the spot to stay while in Quito. The condo owners are new to rental thing but do seem to be interested in upgrading to accomodate thier guests. Almost everything was new in the condo and that was a welcome thing! The location was the perfect spot to experience the real flavor of Quito. I believe overall, the value of this place was very good and better value than staying in a hotel as one could stretch out, cook, relax and be in the midst of things while enjoying a great holiday in a very charming, beautiful city!
Review submitted by Susan from Berkeley, CA (Submitted: 24 Jun 2008)
This apartment is super clean, well appointed and comfortable. The location is fabulous and the owners are exceedingly friendly and helpful. I would totally recommend this to a friend.
Review submitted by Andre from Van Nuys - CA (Submitted: 7 Jan 2008)
Well located, clean, well furnished.
Local assistance by the owner's family was very personable and helpful.