Hacienda Zuleta and the Galo Plaza Lasso Foundation

Hacienda Zuleta

Hacienda Zuletas social involvement

As a 2007 Applicant for the “Tourism for Tomorrow - Investor in People Award and for the Condé Nast World Savers Award” we have high aims in both social and ecological work in our community.

With its tourism business the Plaza family is able to maintain the cultural heritage of a Caranqui archeological site dating back to 700 A.D. and 10,000 square meter colonial architecture. The tourism operation is also the major donator and fund raiser for the non-profit Galo Plaza Lasso Foundation, founded in 1990. Through the foundation funds, Hacienda Zuleta manages a child care center and a library that offer extracurricular activities, workshops and kichua lessons, all as a free service for people from Zuleta and four other surrounding communities. We support a women’s embroidery cooperative, manage a recycling program and through a monthly bilingual newsletter, inform both locals and guests about important and educational topics related to the Hacienda. In 1998, the Hacienda together with the community designated 4,077 hectares of primary forest and paramo as private protected area. The adjoining valley is a restricted area where we reintroduce native plants and where the Foundation runs a Condor rehabilitation in hopes that theses majestic Andean Condor will return in greater numbers to our region. At the Interpretation Center we teach kids about endangered species and nature conservancy. As of 2008, more than 6,000 children have visited the project.

The majority of Hacienda employees are people from the local community. In addition, we offer scholarships, internships, and part time work for mothers, as well as training locals as guides and giving free English lessons to every interested employee.

Our mission is to actively increase the standard of life and education by creating job opportunities and supporting new businesses in Zuleta as our own business grows. We want community members now and in future generations to get the job that best fits his or her abilities without having to abandon the village and family life.

Places to visit:

El Taller (Embroidery Shop)

At the “El Taller,” you will find a workshop of Zuleta’s famous and beautiful embroidery work. “El Taller” is managed by the Galo Plaza Lasso Foundation, a non-profit organization involved in helping the surrounding communities. Our embroideries are made by hundreds of Zuleta’s women who use their spare time to contribute to their agrarian family income. Francisca Carlosama, the head of Zuleta’s Women’s Cooperative can demonstrate the process, and you are welcome to buy or order tablecloths, placemats, curtains, blouses and many other beautiful items.

Los Telares

We have re-installed two of our antique weaving chairs where Maestro Inocencio will show you the traditional process from wool to fabric. Until 1995 all the fabric for our embroidery

was made this way and we are trying to keep this ancient knowledge alive.

La Biblioteca de Galo Plaza

We are happy to show you the family area of the main building, including a private library with over 2.000 titles and some master pieces of Ecuadorian Art. You will learn about the family and the history of Zuleta and see antique oil paintings as well as wedding pictures. Every piece of furniture and every little box has a story and we welcome you to enjoy the trip through history!

Condor Huasi

Many of our guests ride or hike to Condor Huasi, our condor rehabilitation project, located about 5 km from the house in a valley surrounded by native forest. At Condor Huasi, you will meet the eight condors we have in captivity and with some luck you might see wild condors flying above you or even landing on the aviary.

Las Piramides

On the Hacienda grounds, you will find the largest and best preserved archeological sites of the ancient Caranqui culture. There are 132 small earth mounds dating back as far as 700 A.D. and five large square truncated pyramids from 1200 A.D.

La Biblioteca de Zuleta

Next to Zuleta’s main entrance, you will find the library of Zuleta. Run by the Galo Plaza Lasso Foundation, the library offers free cultural and educational activities for the community. In the morning hours it is used as a Child Care Center, and in the afternoon, many children from the community arrive for help with homework. We also offer extracurricular activities and workshops. You are more than welcome to visit the library and meet Zuleta’s children.

Hotel details

  • $250 per Day
  • Available Anytime
  • From 1 to 20 people
  • Starts at Traveler's Location

Travel pro profile