Tag Archive | "Cotacachi Cathedral"

Cotacachi Hotel – Land of the Sun Inn

Land of the Sun Inn is known as the hotel that saved Cotacachi.

The Inn Land of the Sun in Cotacachi gives a 20% discount on room rates to Ecuador Living Club members.


Sunrise at Inn Land of the Sun.

Inn Land of the Sun is the center of Cotacachi.


Land of the Sun courtyard.

There are many pleasures  at the Inn.

The colonial architecture charms and welcomes you.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Other Inn Land of the Sun amenities include:

  • Free broadband internet.
  • Free calls to the USA, Canada and Europe.
  • Free served full breakfast.

Room rates at Inn Land of the Sun in Cotacachi begin at only $59 a night plus 22% service and tax.

Enjoy the beauty of Cotacachi. Here is the Cotacachi Cathedral next door to the hotel

Inn Land of the Sun by night.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

By day.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Inn Land of the Sun is Cotacachi’s oldest hotel located in a 180 year old colonial building with open air court yard just off Cotacachi’s main plaza and next to Cotacachi’s largest Cathedral.  Here is the hotel.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson de las Flores

The hotel was originally created by Sr. Hugo Cordova who was governor of the Province at a time when the village was in dire economic doldrums.  The  building had been the home of the Cordova family and center of a great ranchero in the colonial days.   Sr. Cordova opened the hotel to attract wealthier Ecuadorians from Quito to vacation in Cotacachi and bring progress to what was then an isolated village.

Here are some snapshots of the Inn Land of the Sun.

The entrance of the hotel in Cotacachi is 56 steps to a magnificent cathedral and park.

Here’s the park on a misty morn.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson de las Flores

The village is quiet and peaceful and once inside Inn Land of the Sun you feel the flavor of its colonial past.

A group enjoys the open air inner courtyard for meetings and dining “al fresco.”

Ecuador real estate for sale

The outer court leads to a dining and meeting room each for 50.  Land of the Sun has a full professional kitchen where the chefs produce delicious, nutritious and energizing meals drawn from the Andes’ mineralized volcanic soil.

Here is one of the renovated rooms.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson de las Flores

Rooms run between $39.99 and $79 a night plus 22% service and tax. This price includes a full served breakfast.

Here is…


a view from the Inn’s…


large suite that features…


king size canopy bed, plus…


sitting room and…


bath and shower, plus…


all hardwood closets and trim and…


balcony dining with a view.

There is regular…




Many seminars…


and events, such as…


the Miss Ecuador pageant


export bazaars and seminars.

Inquiries please contact Franklin Sandoval at mesondelasflores@hotmail.com


Learn About Ecuador & Speak Spanish in Three Days

Learn 3 Day Spanish in Ecuador or Mexico

Learn how to speak Spanish in just three days in Cuenca, Ecuador or Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

Super Thinking tactics help us absorb… retain and recall information better and faster.  We prove this in our Super Thinking + Spanish course which teaches how to communicate in Spanish in just three days.

Learn Spanish in Cuenca, Ecuador.  September 7 to 12, 2015.   Enjoy half day Spanish courses and tour Cuenca each afternoon.


Rock Brown teaches Spanish in Cuenca Ecuador.

Cuenca is Ecuador’s most popular city, a UNESCO World Heritage Trust site because of its many beautiful colonial buildings.  Cuenca has wonderful architecture, tourist attractions, restaurants, hotels and night activity.


Ecuador Living Club members can enjoy discounts at Cuenca hotels as well.

Learn Spanish in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

super spanish canada

Super Spanish teachers Shawn and Suzanne Bandick and their children teach Super Spanish in Mexico.

Join the Bandicks November 27, 28 and 29th, 2015 in Playa del Carmen, in the heart of the Riviera Maya on the Mexican Caribbean.  Plan a holiday and include a Spanish course. What better way to practice?  The closest airport is Cancun (CUN), 45 minutes away from Playa del Carmen.

playa del carmen

Playa del Carmen

There are plenty of extra things to do before or after the course.  Playa del Carmen is a very short walk to the beach, stroll the famous 5th ave., go diving and enjoy a multitude of restaurants and cafes.  More beaches are nearby and the Tulum ruins are only 30 minutes south.   Chichen Itza one of the New Wonders of the World and the ruins of Coba are a few hours away.

This course really works!

An M.D. who attended wrote:   We want to thank you plus all the others for making the class such a fun and rewarding experience.   I took Spanish as an undergraduate and lasted two days before dropping the class due to my own anxieties.  Over the years I have tried to learn French, Italian, and Spanish yet again using a variety of methods such as Rosetta Stone, Berlitz etc. and was never successful.  I finally feel like I can be successful at learning to converse at Spanish–in fact already feel successful!  Thanks so much for teaching an old dog some new tricks.  We’re both looking forward to continuing the learning process, having fun doing so, and taking more classes.

See a ten minute video of Gary Scott and Pronunciation coach Don Childs showing how to get started creating Spanish sentences right now.


Click here for FREE Super Spanish video.

Super Spanish in Ecuador –  September 7 to 12, 2015 –  Single $275 /  Couple $499

Super Spanish Mexico – November 27, 28 and 29th –  Single $275 / Couple $499

The Bandicks and John Fisher have created their own programs using a Super Spanish training from Merri and me.

Unlock the power of your untapped knowledge.

Super Thinking + Spanish course goes beyond just learning to speak Spanish.

There are numerous little known, but scientifically proven ways to enhance the speed, accuracy and efficiency of your decision making process for greater wealth, health and happiness. In just three days you can gain almost amazing learning skills.  Plus you become skilled in Spanish as a bonus.

In just three days?  Sound too good to be true?

This is not a gimmick nor a trick. At least three best selling books, Superlearning, the Mozart Effect and Superlearning 2000 have revealed insights about how we can learn and think more powerfully based on systems drawn from the Bulgarian, Dr. Georgi Lozanov.  In 1980 Superlearning sold over two million copies and showed how the Lozanov learning system blended long-tested sciences of yoga with contemporary physiology and psychology so people could learn faster and better.

The 3 Day Spanish system includes some of Dr. Lozanov’s original work that uses music to integrate brain waves so the process of absorbing, processing and recalling information is vastly accelerated.

Super Spanish in Canada

Shawn and Suzanne Bandick teach Super Spanish in Mexico and Canada.

Here is one more rave from Shawn and Suzanne’s Mexico course.
super spanish course images

The course integrates the use of musci with 17 lessons that teach you over 4,000 Spanish words.

Fluency in a language is considered to come when you know 1,200 words.  To prove that it is possible to gain this and much more, let me share just one of the 17 lessons.

Here are the thousands of Spanish words lesson #1:  All words in Spanish and English that end in ION are almost identical,  just pronounced differently. For example action is accion, education educacion, manipulation, manipulacion, etc.

Now you already literally know hundreds of Spanish nouns.  This is just one of seventeen Spanish lessons you gain. The next lesson teaches you how to pronounce each of these nouns. Then you learn in a third lesson almost as many verbs, almost as quickly.

You also learn how to avoid conjugating verbs by sticking with the infinitive (far easier than it sounds). This simple lesson leaves you sounding like a Spanish professor.

There are many other lessons. For example lesson five shows how to sound infinitely polite and yet get almost anything you want in Spanish. Lesson six gives you the valuable connectors and the seventh lesson triples your Spanish capacity with yesterday, now and tomorrow.

By the end of the three day course you will feel quite comfortable speaking Spanish without stress!

A delegate who learned Super Spanish outlined how this course can help you.   After three days, I can speak Spanish in complete sentences. In simple conversations, such as buying groceries or ordering a meal, I can make myself understood. I think that’s incredible!  Although I am far from the competence level of a native speaker, I feel I’ve taken a giant step forward in learning Spanish so that I can experience the people and culture of Ecuador.  The foregoing benefits would have more than justified the time and money I invested in Super Thinking Super Spanish. And learning Spanish was not the most important benefit I got from the course.  In recent years, I’ve rarely relaxed (No wonder I have had high blood pressure!) .   In class, the past three days, I’ve been introduced to the calming effects of Baroque music.  What a blessing! I’m inclined to make this a daily part of my life.   Rob Christi

The Super Spanish helps you start speaking and understanding Spanish right away.  This can help you speak Spanish faster and make your traditional Spanish course easier and more effective. 

A Livescience.com article helps explain why this course works and how delegates are creating Spanish sentences by the first lunch break and can communicate well in Spanish after just three days.   This article by Jeremy Hsu, LiveScience Senior Writer, is entitled “CIA Seeks Anyone, Anyone Who Can Speak 2 Languages”.

Four important points in the article are shown in excerpts below with my comments to show what has been wrong with traditional Spanish courses and why the Super Thinking tactic is perfect for this program.

This three day course gets you speaking and thinking Spanish all the time so you can use and/or think Spanish every day… and communicating even from the beginning.  In this way the education grows even when Spanish is not being spoken.

The Super Thinking course first integrates the brain.  Students learn better with relaxed concentration. Then the course teaches them 17 simple lessons so they know 4005 words in Spanish and can use them to create sentences. In this way, you can communicate in just three days.

Travel, accommodations and food are not included.

Super Spanish in Ecuador –  September 7 to 12, 2015 –  Single $275 /  Couple $499

Super Spanish Mexico – November 27, 28 and 29th –  Single $275 / Couple $499


Here are what delegates wrote about a Super Thinking + Spanish seminar. 

“Hi Gary & Merri, You two are the BEST!!! Your Seminar was fantastic! I am so excited. I had procrastinated fulfilling my continuing education for my Broker’s License and then just before my surgeries, I realized by expiration date isn’t Nov. 12th – it is Sept 12th. Well, as you can see prior to taking your course I had only completed 3 units of the required 45 units. I thought I would take your course and then complete my remaining 42 units over the next 2 weeks. However, I took one class exam on Saturday night, August 27th. I didn’t even take the cellophane off the required Course manuals until after I saw the two of you today less than 5 hours ago! I used your techniques and completed 39 units of continuing education today. I have now completed all 45 units. All of my test scores were in the 90.6-96% range. My course exam information is listed below. I just wanted to let you know how valuable your course was to me. Thanks again!” Suzy Kurinsky

Another wrote:  Thanks for the Spanish course.  This technique is truly a breakthrough in learning.  I believe I learned more Spanish in four days than I learned in four weeks in a previously attended Costa Rica language school.  The Costa Rica school taught a very limited number of memorized words and phrases. Ted.

Another delegate at a Super thinking plus Spanish seminar wrote:  The Super Thinking approach exposed us to a broad variety of works and the technique needed to expand the language.  Again, Thanks for the experience.

One attendee wrote: I just wanted to say thank you so much for everything during the seminar. You guys are indeed a shining example of having a business that truly serves others. And thanks for the extra time spent and good things taught to me personally. I have begun to implement them already and will continue to apply them. And you might be interested that waiting for my flight home I ended up sitting next to a woman from Quito and could understand some of what she said in a cell phone conversation. We talked a little and she said that I should visit Ecuador!  Thank you again for your real graciousness and acceptance! I will also write to Merri and thank her as well. And I wish that I could do something for you two!

Another wrote: Thank you!  We  always look forward to spending time and learning about so many fascinating things. Like Minded people and Vivaldi! What could be better?

Another sent this note: Thank you for the wonderful workshop on Super Learning + Spanish!  I really enjoyed the workshop.

Since I returned home, I have purchased some of the CDs of Baroque music and thought about which specific pieces will work best in different parts of my classes.  I am also reading Perfect Health by Deepak Chopra.  I found your discussion of this book to be very helpful in showing how to balance one’s life.  I have adjusted my daily schedule, and I can already notice a difference in my productivity.

Thank you for sending the file of the 4005 Spanish words.  This will be very helpful in my daily review of Spanish.

Another emailed this: Every day I’m becoming more proficient in Spanish.  As I get ready to do something, I think about how I would say it in Spanish.  Thank you again for a Super Workshop!  With love and blessings,

Another: It certainly was an interesting and intriguing four days for me.  I enjoyed the Spanish but even more so, all the tentacles that extended during those four days that went into so many different directions.

I grew up in a very SQUARE box with loving  and intelligent parents but my world remained within this box, unable to see beyond those walls, as I was never encouraged to “think outside the box”..  Mike has been opening doors and leading me outside this box but because of my upbringing I have not completely embraced or understood what was beyond those doors he opened for me.  As I have gotten older I have become more open to the world outside those doors yet those old tapes continue to play and I have not been able to completely release myself and experience all that can be.

Another shared this: Listening to the two of you during our time together has suddenly got me to thinking, and although some of the ideas still seem foreign to me,  I am at a point in my life now where I can say, “anything is possible” and I am now willing to embrace and allow myself to experience the world of possibility and let it take me in directions I may have in the past resisted.  I really don’t know where all this is going to lead me but I am now willing to explore, develop and grow.

I found all the information you offered on healing, realigning the body, nutrition, etc. so fascinating, have you ever thought about doing a course on just that?  With the aging population and the health care issues I think it would be not only an interesting course but one that would be very beneficial to so many.  I, personally, would love to learn more about what you talked about and plan on purchasing the book, “Body Renewal, the Lost Art of Self Healing” for my Kindle.

Thank you again for a wonderful four days!!

Another:  We had fun at Disney World on Monday and sat beside several Personnes Espaniol.  We could understand them however I couldn’t make sentences quickly, but could say one or two word phrases that were understood.  We arrived home at 3am yesterday – the airlines were very late in Denver due to a crew incident.

I found myself making up sentences all day yesterday as I was running errands.  John knows more vocabulary than I at this point as he has studied Spanish previously.  Today I will begin to review the lessons and construct sentences to send to you and the group – as you suggested below.  Es en BUENO sugestion!!!  I also received the email Merri sent with the 4005 words and started to scroll through those yesterday.

Another: Thank YOU for everything you have done to create and bring this wonderful experience to all of us.  It takes a well sychronized team of people to put on an effective, change producing seminar!  I have given many seminars and enjoyed the experience immensely.  The outcome is even better!  Estoy une infantil de Super Thinking and Spanish, y es possible aprender en tiempo.

John and I both thank all of you for the wonderful experience – we are working now to clear up things so we can leave for the Galapagos and Ecuador November 25th – December 20th.  Nosotros tiene muchos appreciacion!  Gracias y Abrazos,

  Muchas gracias para la informacion!  I had a wonderful time at the Super Learning + Spanish weekend!… excelente!

I was impressed with your depth of knowledge on numerous subjects and your ability to speak about them with exceptional recall.  Con mucho apriciar,  P.S. Yo estoy enteresado en Espanol #2.

One delegate even explained how after our course they ended up as the accidental translator: Gary,  I have sent a couple of messages, and  a story of Mike being able to translate yesterday for a Spanish person  who couldn’t understand what a man was trying to tell him!

We loved the seminar, and are excited to put the super learning to practice, and especially the great company of like-minded people (especially G & M!)  Muchas Gracias!  Tiene an excellante dias.

One delegate communicated entirely in Spanish…. after just our Super Thinking + Spanish seminar: Buenas dias nuestra maestra perfectamente, Merri!   Muchas gracias por la lista espanol.

Claro, David y yo aprendemous mucho espanol el fine de semana pasada. Gary y usted nos hacen espanol muy facil aprender. Es importante continuar a practicar espanol cada dia. Gracias tambien!  Buenas suerte…hasta la vista! Con mucho amor,

Comments from another delegate: I wanted you to know that the Spanish course has proven incredibly helpful. Dealing with internet service providers and shopping for appliances, etc., normally would have required me hiring a translator to follow me around. While it may not be pretty or 100% grammatically correct, I am understood. Thank you!  Saludos!


Delegates during a relaxation session.

Another a dentist said: I was so delighted with my experience at the Spanish training.  I felt more confident of ability to pronounce Spanish than I ever was of French or German.  Funny… I did not think I remembered any French or German but when I cannot remember the Spanish words the German and French popped up.  Practicing my pronunciation made my trip home go faster. I never enjoyed pronouncing either of the other two, but this was fun. It is hard to fall asleep at the wheel when you are moving your mouth to speak Spanish. It does work your mouth in a different way.  I realized that you have to say each syllable slowly and correctly(until you get it perfectly) and when you do it is impressive.

It was amazing to see us all writing such advanced sentences after a few days and so much more enjoyable than having to go through the alphabet to build the words to build the sentences.

Super Spanish in Ecuador –  September 7 to 12, 2015 –  Single $275 /  Couple $499

Super Spanish Mexico – November 27, 28 and 29th –  Single $275 / Couple $499










Ecuador Christmas Eve

Here is an Ecuador Christmas Eve Thought for All.

One great part of Christmas in Ecuador… especially in the Ecuador villages is less commercialization of Christmas.


The Cathedral next to Meson de las Flores, gets busy during the Holiday season at Ecuador’s Christmas… not the stores.

We wish you three ideals of all Christmas… wherever you live… whoever you are… whatever you do.


Cotacachi Cathedral at…



Tomorrow’s holiday, celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ. The thoughts in this holiday are so rich in inspiration that everyone can gain blessings from these regardless of culture, religion or creed.

To see this, may I share three stories of Jesus given by those from other religions and cultures that have been meaningful to me?


Cotacachi Cathedral in the…


middle of the day.

The first story came from an Ecuador Yatchak and reminded me of the ideal “That we are eternal.” This belief was fortified many years ago when an Andean shaman and I discussed the concepts of life and death.  When I made  mention of death, he replied quite sharply. “Do you not see? There is no death,” he said. “Did you not listen to the message from Jesus?”


Cotacachi Cathedral at dusk.

A Huron Indian carol reminded me that wisdom was not contained in just South America’s history.

This carol touched my heart by sharing the ideals that there is always hope and renewal in an Indian way. This carol evolved from a legend of Deganaidah, the Peacemaker. This mythic person was known as the Man from the North and was said to be born in the Wendot tribe (Huron) on the northern shore of Lake Ontario. Tradition says he was born of a virgin who had been visited by a messenger of the Great Spirit Tarenyawagon, who was bringing a messenger to give lasting peace to mankind. Here is the carol:

Twas in the moon of winter time

when all the birds had fled,

The mighty Gitchimanitou

sent angels choirs instead.

Before the light the stars grew dim

and wandering hunters heard the hymn

Jesus your King is born,

Your king is born.

Within a lodge of broken bark

The tender babe was found

A ragged robe of rabbit skin

Enwrapped his beauty round

The chiefs from afar before him knelt

With gifts of fox and beaver pelt.

Oh children of the forest free

O sons of Manitou

The holy child of earth and heaven

Is born today for you.

Come kneel before the radiant boy

Who brings you beauty, peace and joy.


You can see that the Cathedral  seen from Mt. Cotacachi dominates the village.

An even more ancient poem reminds me that the influence of Jesus.

I was reminded of the third ideal, that we are always cared for if we place our lives with God, when reading the 14th century Sufi (Islamic) poet Rumi. His beautiful poem reminds us of the wisdom shown in Matthew 6:24: Jesus says, “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”

Here is Rumi’s poem:  Lovers think they’re looking for each other, but there’s only one search: wandering this world is wandering that, both inside one, transparent sky. In here there is no dogma and no heresy. The miracle of Jesus is himself, not what he said or did about the future. Forget the future. I’d worship someone who could do that. On the way you may want to look back, or not. But of you can say, there’s nothing ahead, there will be nothing there. Stretch your arms and take hold the cloth of your clothes with both hands. The cure for pain is in the pain. Good and bad are mixed. If you don’t have both, you don’t belong with us. When one of us gets lost, is not here, he must be inside us. There‘s no place like that anywhere in the world. RUMI


Cotacachi Cathedral at night.

May all of us, regardless of religion, race or creed, focus on the greatest Christmas ideal of all: “Peace on earth and goodwill to all.”

Gary & Merri

However there may be more in the air than just rosy smells and Christmas tidings during this Ecuador Christmas.  See an Ecuador Christmas thought here.

Join us in 2010. See our 2010 seminar and tour schedule here

Cotacachi Hotel Savings

Gain Cotacachi hotel savings and more… up to $343 in only one week in Ecuador.

I explain below. First let me introduce one of the nicest small Ecuador hotels in Ecuador. This small hotel (15 rooms) is in Cotacachi… Meson de las Flores.

Ecuador Living subscribers are entitled to one free night  the first time they visit  Cotacachi and stay three nights  or more at Meson de las Flores.  There are many other hotels where you gain discounts as a subcriber… which I explain below.

First more on Meson de las flores in Cotacachi.

There are many charming reasons to stay at Meson de las Flores.

The colonial  architecture charms and welcomes you.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Other Meson de las Flores  hotel amenities include:

  • Free broadband internet..
  • Free calls to the USA, Canada and Europe.
  • Free served breakfast.

Plus a warm, welcoming, caring staff who really do want to look after you.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Room rates at Meson de las Flores in Cotacachi are only $59 a night plus 22% service and tax.

Enjoy the beauty of Cotacachi.  Here is the Cotacachi Cathedral next door to Meson de las Flores by night.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

By day.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson

Save $343 or more at small Ecuador hotels as an Ecuador Living subscriber in just a week.

To assist those interested in Ecuador,  Ecuador Living has established a full time full support research and assistance team to help Ecuador Living subscribers in any way required.

One benefit is hotel savings in Quito, Cotacachi, Cuenca and on the coast.

For example if you stay three days at Meson de las Flores in Cotacachi, one night is free ($79 savings).  If you stay two nights at Palmazul, one night is free ($142) and two nights at Hotel Quito, you save $122 with the discount Ecuador Living subscribers get  there.  That’s a $343 saving compared to you Ecuador Living subscription of $119.

You can subscribe to Ecuador Living here.

Meson de las Flores has a central location in Cotacachi…


All rooms are above the open air courtyard.


A three room suite is avialable on the third floor.  See it at Cotacachi Hotel Suite.

The hotel serves breakfast lunch and dinner in the opebn air courtyard and…


dining room.


Full seminar and AV facilities are available. Here are delagtes meeting at a seminar conducted in Cotacachi at Meson de las Flores and the ajoing Cotacachi Cultural Museum.


Merri, I and the staff of Meson de las flores welcome you!


Left to right:  Gary, Meson mascot Ma, Maurico-translator – night clerk and guide, Eduardo – Maitre d , Franklin – Manager, Alberto – sous chef, Merri, Rosita – room care giver, Consuelo – food server, Rosita Molena- room care giver and Santiago – Chef.


Here is an Ecuador tours update for  Gary Scott’s 2009 Ecuador information tours, courses and seminars conducted at meson de las Flores and Palmazul spa.

He is a view of the Cotacachi sunrise from our suite at hotel Meson de las Flores.


We hope you’ll enjoy Ecuador’s beauty with us soon.

July 4-8 Ecuador Export Tour

July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
July 10-13 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

July 24-26 IBEZ North Carolina

Sept. 17-21 Ecuador Spanish Course
Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Sept. 25-28 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Oct. 9-11 IBEZ North Carolina

Oct. 21-24 Ecuador Import Export Expedition

Nov. 6-8 IBEZ Ecuador
Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Nov. 11-14 Ecuador Coastal Real Estate Tour

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one.  $1,349 for two.

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one.  $1,799 for two.

Gary Scott 2009 Schedule

Gary Scott’s 2009 schedule of Ecuador multi course adventures can help you gain from the economic downturn in 2009. To help you learn about global investing, how to run your own international business and live in Ecuador we have created an opportunity so you save hundreds (even thousands) of dollars any time you attend multiple Ecuador courses and tours in one month.

These courses can be vital for financial survival as well as extra prosperity at this time.

Take for example yesterday’s message which looked at three tactics that create extra profit potential during the bear market rally.  We will examine these tactics in detail during our International Business & Investing course in Cotacachi February 13-15, 2009.

Normal course and tour fees are $499, $749 or $999 for one person and $799, $999 and $1,499 for a couple.  Here are your savings.

In February  we have three courses.

February 9 – 11 …Beyond Logic. The fee is $749 or $999 for two.

February 13-15…International Business & Investing Made EZ.  The fee is $749 or $999 for two.

February 16-17…Ibarra Real Estate Tour. The fee is $499 or $749 for two.

You can attend any two of these courses for $949 ($1,349 couple) or all three for only $1,149 ($1,799 couple).  This saves up to $948.

All these courses and tours will be conducted from our hotel Meson de as Flores.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson de las Flores

Here is our 2009 Ecuador schedule.

Date                Course                      Couples Fee

Jan. 16-21 Ecuador Spanish Course     ($999)
Jan. 22-23 Imbabura Real Estate Tour  ($749)
Jan. 24-27 Coastal Real Estate Tour      ($749)

Feb. 9-11 Beyond Logic                        ($999)
Feb. 13-15 International Business & Investing Made EZ ($999)
Feb. 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour   ($749)

March 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour.    ($749)
March 10-15 Ecuador Export Expedition ($1,499)
March 16-19 Coastal Real Estate Tour     ($749)

May 21-26 Ecuador Spanish Course         ($999)
May 27-28 Imbabura Real Estate Tour      ($749)

June 12-15 Shamanic Mingo Tour             ($999)
June 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour      ($749)
June 18-21 Coastal Real Estate Tour         ($749)

July 2-7 Ecuador Import Export Expedition ($1,499)
July 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour            ($749)
July 10-13 Coastal Real Estate Tour           ($749)

Sept. 17-22 Ecuador Spanish Course         ($999)
Sept. 23-24 Imbabura Real Estate Tour      ($749)
Sept. 25-28 Coastal Real Estate Tour         ($749)

Oct. 21-26 Ecuador Import Export Expedition ($1,499)

Nov. 6-8 International Investing and Business Made EZ Ecuador ($999)
Nov. 9-10 Imbabura Real Estate Tour          ($749)
Nov. 11-14 Coastal Real Estate Tour            ($749)

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one$1,349 for two

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one$1,799 for two

All Coastal tours will be conducted on the beach from our coastal home at Hotel Palmazul.

manta real estate in Ecuador tags

You should normally plan to arrive in Quito two days before the course.  We will pick you up at the airport, help you to your hotel in Quito and bring the group to Cotacachi by coach.

For coastal tours we travel as a group from Quito to Manta by air, then tour the coast for two and a half days returning to Quito on the evening of the third day.

Here I am with Merri and Ma at Palmazul’s beach.

Ecuador real estate for sale

Here I am hiking with Ma above Cotacachi.

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one$1,349 for two

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one$1,799 for two

Cotacachi Cathedral at night.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson de las Flores

Breakfast “al fresco” at El Meson.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson de las Flores

Shamanic ceremony on mingo tour.

2008-04-13 Ecuador shamans

Save hundreds of dollars with a September 2008 course and extension. Choose & Reserve Below.

Enjoying the surf at Palmazul.

Ecuador real estate for sale

Cotacachi plaza.

Cotacachi hotel El Meson de las Flores

Palmazul beach.

Ecuador real estate for sale

Merri, me and Ma above Cotacachi

Gary Scott

Sunset at Palmazul.

Ecuador real estate for sale

Attend any two Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$949 for one$1,349 for two

Attend any three Ecuador courses or tours in a calendar month…$1,199 for one$1,799 for two

Course and tour fees do not include air fares, food, accommodations or individual transportation.

Ecuador Crime Update

A number of emails about Ecuador crime have come in such as the one a reader sent below.

The people of Ecuador work hard. The indigenous code is “Do not be lazy – do not lie – do not steal.” The people is what we love most about Ecuador. Yet we get this…


“Gary Recent reports (today) of attempted murder of American tourist.
does little to inspire confidence in Ecuador. You need to publish this story!”

The story is entitled, “Vicious attack turns couple’s dream trip to nightmare
Oregon man critical but stable after being stabbed on Ecuadorian beach”

This article tells about a man who was stabbed in Esmeraldas, Ecuador.

You will not read Ecuador crime stories like this at our site. We prefer to publish useful information that help readers avoid crime. “After the fact” horror stories have little value, but shock value.

Ecuador is a country of great beauty. Here is the Cotacachi Cathedral near where we stroll every evening and at dawn.


The article above did not help the man avoid being stabbed. Had he read our site (shown below) perhaps he would have had a different experience…impossible to tell.

There is an even deeper issue if you travel to Ecuador…anywhere in the world…or even around your home.

I am not sure why this particular crime became international news. Had this stabbing happened in Oregon, it may not have even made the local news.

I know. I grew up in Portland Oregon and there was plenty of crime there. What city may I ask does not have crime? Where in the US is a stabbing or even shooting (unless it is in a school or involves many people) that makes the global news?

Here is the bigger point.

Anywhere you go, even the city near where you live has places where you are more likely to be involved in a violent crime.

The people of Ecuador are by nature, sweet and gentle…but yes there is crime in Ecuador…like everywhere…just not as much violent crime as in many places.

Cotacachi hombre.


I regularly post warnings for my subscribers and recently wrote about Ecuador crime and safety. See a review of this warning here.

However, though one has to be careful wherever you go, that article shows that Ecuador is not even in the top fifty nations for murder rates. Colombia is #1, Mexico is 6th, Costa Rica 19th and the US 24th.

This is one reason why we recommend to our readers not to go too close to the Colombian border when they are in Ecuador.

In fact for the past year we have had a posting at our site (offering our real estate tours) that warns about Esmeraldas (where the man from Oregon was stabbed) in particular. That warning says:

Warning #3: Colombian Guerillas

Plus we avoid Esmeraldas…too close to the Colombian border. When you are in doubt about an area, a simple rule of thumb is …”follow the missionaries”. They are a fearless lot, going places where most people won’t. If missionaries won’t go somewhere, you probably should not either. The Latin America Missionary web site recently wrote about Esmeraldas:

“Miami (LAMNS)—New reported threats against Americans in Colombia are once again causing U.S. missionaries to be careful about their movements. Along Ecuador’s coast near the city of Esmeraldas , Batchelor reported that missionaries have had to take caution.”

See the entire warning and how to join our Ecuador coastal tours here.

Ecuador feels safe. You see children out walking playing, day and night.




and girls


This is why our Ecuador Living service is so important. I grew up in Portland, Oregon the same state as the man who was attacked. So I know if anyone had asked him about going to Portland he would have warned them to avoid parts of Burnside Street. If one hangs in the wrong places on Burnside, there is a chance to be robbed, stabbed AND shot.

In June when Merri and I were visiting my mom, we had an unusual experience.  We wanted to go to a pharmacy near her house to buy some bandaids but were told my mom that the store only had daylight hours.  Well, that surprised us because we’ve thought that pharmacies would be open 24 hours.  “Not true,” she told us, “too dangerous”.

Our 40 years of experience in global travel and more than a decade in Ecuador means that Merri and I have a lot of safety experience to share.

Many families have moved to Cotacachi Ecuador from the US and Canada. Here is a group on our real estate tour viewing San Miguel homes.


We have helped over 3,000 people to Ecuador in the past decade and never had a single violent crime. Our close friends in Ecuador run a travel agency and the largest Spanish school for thousands of young people. Ditto…not one physical assault.

This is in part because we know which areas to avoid and we let our readers know.

Esmeraldas is considered dangerous. I know that and so do any readers who read what I write.

Ecuador is not a place of violent crime. Ecuador is also not a place of drugs. This is interesting and some people are surprised. Ecuador is very strict when it comes to crime and drugs.

A September 30, 2008 Miami Herald article entitled “U.S. ambassador says Ecuador solid on drugs” said: “The U.S. ambassador to Ecuador says the country’s anti-drug efforts influenced the decision by the U.S. House of Representatives to extend a trade promotion program in Ecuador for another 10 months.”

Ecuador’s government is also cracking down on crime right now.

Another Cotacachi hombre.


Recent news articles have interpreted this police crack down incorrectly and claimed that Ecuador’s government had declared a State of Emergency. This is not quite correct.

One great asset Merri and I have developed is an extensive network of friends across the country who can provide us grass roots information. I have asked around, “What does this state of emergency mean?” and here is what a number of our Ecuadorian friends explained:

Our friend and attorney wrote about the State of Emergency:

“The reason is to fight the surge in violent and non-violent crimes in cities such as Manta, Guayaquil and Quito.”

A businessman from Quito wrote:

“This declaration of emergency, must be construed for what it stands. More than a radical mobilization effort (which it does involve among other things), it is a way to bypass bureaucracy in the purchase of equipment for the police.”

Anther coastal businessman wrote: “Yes, there is a state of police emergency due to a wave of violence lately including an attack on a US couple in Esmeraldas. You see more police in the city and more controls.”

An American who lives on the coast wrote: “I have an e-mail from Cuenca stating that he will explain when I get there but not to worry — Ecuador is always in a state of emergency. My friend’s father in law is a cop and hasn’t mentioned anything. Normally they are first to know and wear fatigues when there is a state of emergency. No fatigues.”

Steve, our man in Ecuador, wrote: “Gary this is NOT a ‘State of Emergency’ – which has all kinds of undertones such as curfews, withdrawal of democracy and all kinds of other draconion measures. This is, from my reading of yesterday’s El Commercio anyway, an emergency police operation. Right now there are university student demonstrations in Manta against the violence – in other words they are saying that the police/government aren’t doing enough. Hence, probably, the police operations. A long term resident American with a business in La Mariscal was shot dead last week in Avenida Amazonas in Quito. He was carrying $7,000 takings (!) and probably resisted the robbers. This is not viewed as a big thing here. It was only on page 17 of one newspaper ‘El Telegrafo’ and I can´t find any mention of it at all in La Hora today except they have replaced the two police chiefs in Manta and are tightening up on all report procedures and sending in an elite hit squad to break up organized crime – so there´s a positive – they’re doing something about the problem.”

Another businessman wrote: “Just, just to comment on this email from Steve..the American guy that was shot had a bar in the Mariscal area and it was most likely a contracted job..two men on a motorbike shot him from a distance..I do not think it had to do with the money..at least that is what I heard from my messenger boy who saw the shooting.”

For the record Mariscal Sucre is one of the areas, as is Amazonas Avenue, that we recommend to avoid. We get a lot of flak for this because this is the main tourist area…lots of great bars, hostels, even the Hilton Hotel. So this area is promoted a lot…but we lived there and know that the tourists attract the thieves.

This is another important point about not just Ecuador but all travel and being a tourist. The danger comes from being in places you do not know.

Merri and I know Cotacachi well. Here is Merri with Ma leading some friends into the village.


The infrastructure is not deteriorating here. More police. Now free education and here is the new road installed in the center of Cotacachi.


Some people feel that tourists are target in Ecuador. They are right…but tourists are targeted everywhere because they are in a places they do not know.

Having lived abroad for most of my life, I have almost always been a tourist. When I lived in Hong Kong I was one of the minority…the white, long nose, foreign devil swimming in a yellow sea. There we had to worry about Teddy boys…gangs that fought, and of course being robbed in Wan Chai and the tourist areas.

Here I am with the first Hong Kong sales team I built 40 years ago. Can you spot who stands out?


When living in Europe and the UK I was a foreigner there as well…and robbed a couple of times until I caught on. One night I really made mistake in Amsterdam…had to barricade myself in the hotel room…in a district where I should not have been…Oops.

When Merri and I moved to North Carolina, we were foreigners there also. Our real estate broker helped. “See that bar there,” he said. “Do not go in there…unless you want to deal with Bubba and his pool cue when he asks if you’re from around here.” We do not drink so this was not a problem…but it was good to know.

Even stranger, I am now a foreigner in suburbs where I grew up in Oregon. Rockwood Oregon is not like it was. My sister has had to tell me where not to go..my old stomping grounds…and I did not know! My mom has had several break ins at her house of 50 years. We have had no robberies in Ecuador.

There is a huge opportunity these fears about Ecuador crime or anywhere create.
When an area has a problem, most people paint it with a broad brush. Yet most dangerous areas are measured in blocks not miles.

One reader from the Esmeraldas area pointed this out when he wrote:

“Thanks for the follow up and for Steve’s follow up as well. Also, remember we live 25 klicks south of Esmeraldas which in Ecuador is a long distance. I have checked with my contacts in Tonsupa and so far nothing of significance other than a terrific cash offer for a piece of land we own just off the beach.”

You can often find bargains in really safe, good areas that inexperienced investors avoid because they do not know which blocks to avoid and which are good.

This does not mean that Ecuador is for everyone.

I doubt that you will find any place where there is not risk, if you do not take care. Yet I always recommend for anyone to come to Ecuador if it does not feel right.

Go to places that seem exciting to you. Do not travel just because you dislike where you are. Travel because you have overwhelming excitement about where you are going!

Then, wherever you go, be careful. Remember that you have to go through a learning curve in any place that is new.

If Ecuador sounds exciting, please do come, look and see for yourself. Most who do and the many families who have moved here feel pretty darn safe…because we have learned where and where not to go.

If you do come to Ecuador, I have established a full time full support research and assistance team to help Ecuador Living subscribers in any way required. Part of this team are multi lingual Westerners so we understand the Western cultural needs as well as those of Ecuador. We know the typical mistakes that our friends from the US and Canada make when coming down to begin and can help you avoid them.

Here are some pictures that one of our delegates took in Cotacachi.


You can subscribe to our Ecuador Living service here.



Join us in Cotacachi this winter.

Jan. 16-21 Ecuador Spanish Course
Jan. 22-23 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
Jan. 24-27 Coastal Real Estate Tour

Feb. 13-15 International Business & Investing Made EZ
Feb. 16-17 Imbabura Real Estate Tour

March 8-9 Imbabura Real Estate Tour
March 10-15 Ecuador Export Expedition
March 16-19 Coastal Real Estate Tour

Ecuadorians love music.


They love flowers and beauty.


They are friendly.


They are very religious. Here is the cathedral next to our hotel.



Here are Merri and me with our Ecuador family and Godson, “Quinti Ananki” (King of the Hummingbirds).


Better still join us all year in Ecuador! See our schedule of 26 courses, tours, mingos and expeditions we’ll conduct in 2009.