Nonprofit hotels are the real deal.
That’s not a typo: dreams do come true. Nonprofit hotels DO exist… and the one I stayed at (Hotel Con Corazon) is even cooler than I could have ever imagined.
This hotel is the ultimate choice for a girlfriends’ getaway or a sister trip or a solo travel treat-yo-self in Nicaragua. I’m already planning my return visit!
Because, seriously: Is there a better solution for travel accommodations than a hotel that pays fair wages, invests in staff education, and funnels profits into community initiatives? By my definition of sustainable travel, I’d say not.
8 Coolest Things About Staying at Hotel Con Corazon: Granada’s Nonprofit Hotel
1. A stay supports the community
Your stay supports employees and local initiatives.
Hotel Con Corazon invests in tutoring programs for local kids, organizes extracurriculars like creative classes and sports, sponsors tuition for secondary and university students, and works with third parties to invest in educational facilities. They support an average of 250 children in educational programs each year.
The hotel also creates stable jobs (and stimulates and supports employees to go back to school), and purchases local products from local vendors and suppliers, while encouraging suppliers to develop new initiatives to improve the future of Nicaragua. The hotel provide income and development opportunities to about 20 local Nicaraguans.
The entire hotel is also transparent in its work (including with taxes, which they pay like any private business); you can ask the hotel managers more, or read further in their annual report, or check out this impact report.
2. They have the BEST activities and excursions
100% of the profits from tours and trips booked through Hotel Con Corazon go to educational projects. What better reason to book is there?
The hotel has all the standard trips on offer, from Masaya Volcano ($30/per person) to Canopy Tours ($40/per person) to the Islands Boat Trip ($25/ per person). There are also some very interesting cultural activities, like learning to cook like a Nicaraguan or making your own pinata!
I would highly recommend the tour I took, the Social Handicrafts Tour ($20/per person), which visits two important centers:
- Centro Social Tío Antonio helps support the deaf and mute community and people with disabilities by providing resources, training, and employment at either the Hammock Workshop or Cafe la Sonrisa.
- Marroquinería Arróliga, a leather workshop, assists young people with limited opportunities or who are recovering from addiction, giving them jobs and at the same time providing them the opportunity to express themselves creatively through leather carvings.
3. You get to eat a blow-your-mind breakfast
Even if you’re not a guest, you can come in before 10:30am for a walk-in breakfast in the garden area. Don’t miss out on a delicious meal AND supporting this incredible endeavor!
The meal is super tasty, the juice is fresh, and most awesomely: the staff members serving it are SO friendly and welcoming. Which brings me to my next point…
4. You’ll hang out with seriously 5-star staff
It’s obvious as a guest that the staff at Hotel Con Corazon love what they do. And it makes sense, as the hotel pays fair wages, provides cool perks, and invests in staff training and education (including English!).
Every staff member I came into contact with – from the waitress who served my breakfast to the receptionist who checked me in – had a genuine smile and seemed to truly care about my experience. I felt super comfortable to ask for recommendations, advice, and help when needed.
5. The rooms are restful
The guest rooms are modern but definitely not sterile with fun and friendly accents. I’d describe the rooms as 4 C’s: cozy, comfortable, contemporary, and with corazon!
6. That pool area though!
Sustainable (and nonprofit) apparently does NOT equal frumpy or bare bones.
If you need proof, just check out this gorgeous, lush pool area that could have been lifted from the priciest, swankest resort in town. It feels like a 5-star resort rather than a mid-range nonprofit hotel.
7. The wifi works for remote work
At first, I thought Hotel Con Corazon had horrible wifi. Then, I realized I was just looking for it in the wrong places.
Wifi in the room does NOT work very well, and comes in and out. However, next to the bar, in the first courtyard, it works great! If you need to spend time online (like me, booooo), grab a seat near the bar area and do what ya gotta do.
8. The extras are on-point
Hotel Con Corazon has plenty of extras for relaxation and rejuvenation. The supersize chess is a new personal obsession, but they’ve also got a book exchange and locally-made hammocks in the garden to relax in (perfect for reading that new book).
Aside from the free wifi, they have a few PCs for guest use so you can access the internet if you’ve chosen to leave your electronics at home.
One of my favorite perks, though, is that they’ve eschewed plastic bottles. Instead, they’ve got big pitchers of water around the grounds, which you can use to fill up your glass (provided) or your water bottle.
Hotels with Heart around the world
Hotel Con Corazon has been so successful (yay!) that they plan to open up 10 new hotels in the next 10 years!
Next up: Oaxaca!
Book Hotel Con Corazon direct on their website here.
You can also book via Agoda or Booking.com, starting at $60 per night with breakfast included.
While I was a complimentary guest of Hotel Con Corazon, I would have stayed here anyways, and my opinions remain my own.
Pin it for Later: Granada’s Nonprofit Hotel with a Heart: Hotel Con Corazon