Guatemala – November 19-20, 2010

On these days, Friday and Saturday, we and Melanie’s family went to a nice hotel located a one hour and fifteen minute drive south of Xela, at a lower elevation, so the weather was warm, and we were able to enjoy swimming. The hotel is not far from the Pacific Ocean.

On Friday.

The hotel is actually a cluster of four hotels, collectively called Los Hostales del IRTRA. The complex has 669 rooms, making it the largest hotel in Guatemala and one of the largest in Central America. We stayed in a section called Hostal Santa Cruz, in a unit like this.

This was originally a large farm owned by the Germans. The buildings are laid out skillfully around the mature trees. One tree is perhaps the tallest I have ever seen. There are also many of the tree shown below, with the unusual base of the trunk. I was not able to find out what kind it is. Do any of my readers know?

The place has many Christmas decorations, including this nativity scene.

There are three or four pools, each large and complex. We chose one with an excellent shallow area for children. This pool has four sections on two different levels, with a South Seas Island theme.

We ate at this restaurant, one of many here.

This large art piece is needlework on fabric.

I was not able to do much successful birding here. I did see a parrot that is different from any I have seen elsewhere. It may be the white-fronted parrot, but I was not able to make positive identification. However, this next bird is obvious. Many of them stroll the grounds and come into the pool areas looking for food crumbs.

Saturday, the 20th

While walking the grounds, we saw a giant white tent, possibly being prepared for a wedding reception, judging from the dozens of floral arrangements.

The spa was offering many services, so JoLene and Melanie got manicures, and when Mel and Julio heard that I was considering a massage, they paid for it for me as a birthday present (the day is tomorrow). What a treat of relaxation!

The two little girls had a grand time.

And so, back home to Xela.

2 Responses

  1. Thankss!…

    I want to personally praise you for putting this blog together, and putting the effort in it to make it a insightful read. Will be back for more….

    • And I hope you can visit this fine city some day. If you do, don’t just go to the usual tourist places and McDonald’s restaurant. Also seek out the poor and those who serve the poor in the name of Christ.

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