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El Confesionario, international restaurant

Friday evening a group of 9 friends, my wife, and I enjoyed an absolutely awesome dinner at this beautiful international restaurant. I had the 3-mushroom ravioli, my wife had the spaghetti with shrimp, others had filet mignon, and others had other dishes. All were thoroughly impressed. Also, this location is one of the most beautiful settings for a restaurant in Cuenca, in my opinion. BYOB, and no cork charge.

Address: Parque Calderon-Benigno Malo y Simon Bolivar Seminario San Luis

Contact information:  099 579 5891

Recommended by Joe Hill:  jdhillinsurance@gmail.com

Ingeniero Omar Barbosa, electrical problems and installations

Omar, a Venezuelan-trained electrical engineer, solved my problem with a 3-way switch and another circuit that wasn't working properly. He also understands problems with voltage fluctuations and how they can be resolved. He is also glad to do any needed electrical installations. He has part time work teaching electrical engineering to Ecuadorians at a university in Guayaquil, but needs more work. Call him if you have an electrical problem or need an installation. He speaks and understands English.

Address: Cementario de la Ciudad, Cuenca

Contact information: eldeomar1@gmail.com 099 642 3724

Recommended by Craig Adams: (07) 418 7291

Cuenca Guitar Spa, stringed instrument and amplifier repair

George Marrero, the owner/operator of the Cuenca Guitar Spa recently worked on an instrument I was unable to fix. He came up with an innovative solution to the problem, completed the work ahead of schedule and charged less than I expected. George is an excellent technician who cares about both his work and his customers. I highly recommend Cuenca Guitar Spa if you have any problems with your stringed instrument, amplifier or effects, or if you just want to give them some TLC. You won't find any better shop in Cuenca.

Address: 8-63 Calle Larga between Benigno Malo and Luis Cordero

Contact information: cuencaguitarspa@gmail.com

Recommended by Walt Panko:  walt@waltpanko.com

Zarza Gastropub, restaurant and craft beer

We had a late lunch today at Zarza Gastropub. What a nice surprise. The restaurant is located in a renovated older home on the same street as SuperMaxi el Vergel. We made it for happy hour (from 2 – 5 PM each day), and enjoyed delicious tacos and nachos for a very good price. The three different beers we tried were wonderful. We are looking forward to trying other items from their large menu.

Address: Alfonso Cordero and Miguel Cordero - in front of Hotel Casona

Contact information:  07 410 3985

Recommended by Alison Andrus:  agandrus15@gmail.com

Jia Jin Chinese restaurant and massage

A friend invited me to try this pretty new Chifa restaurant. It is a small family run restaurant open for breakfast. Everything is made fresh and natural. The menu is not one of those menus that goes on and on. The make Dumpling/Raviolis ($4), Steamed Buns ($.75 each), Fried Rice of various types ($3), fried noodles of various types ($4), boiled noodles with beef ($3.50), and steamed bread ($.50). All the servings are large and delicious. They are open from 9 AM - 8 PM every day except Sunday. 

In addition, both the mother and father offer massage, and shiatsu for $20 an hour. They also offer cupping for $15 for 10 minutes, and a foot bath for $20 for 30 minutes. I love the shiatsu. 

When you call for an appointment you will speak with the son, Jin, pronounced "Jean" who speaks English. 


Address: Calle Mariscal Lamar on the corner of Francisco Paredes Herrera. Entrance on Francisco Paredes Herrera

Contact information:  096 139 9316

Recommended by Julia Rux: 097 929 7490 juliaecuador260@gmail.com

Rafael Sucozhanay, handyman services

I saw a recommendation for Rafael on GP and I contacted him. He arrived on time with all of the tools needed for the job. He also brought a pencil and a notebook so he could make notes and copy dimensions for the pieces he was going to make to modify my shelving unit. He returned on the time and date as promised and he did the job to my satisfaction and then swept up and disposed of the sawdust.

I recommend Rafael to any person who needs wood work done in their premises.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: rafaellliguisupa@yahoo.com

Recommended by Richard E. Mateyko:  remateyko@gmail.com

Altisimo Chocolate, restaurant

I had lunch there last week and my companion and I loved it; one of the best breakfast sandwiches ever. The owners (Ruth and John, the cook) come out for that personal touch and greet each and every guest making sure all is well. They took the time to cater to my friend’s gluten and food allergies, making a special dish just for her. I also found some great peanut brittle, cookies, chocolate and much more and all at reasonable prices. Highly recommend this new restaurant. And a bonus: You get a card to stamp and after 8 visits, something free.

Address: Gran Columbia 8-86 y Benigno Malo

Contact information: rmahoney@AltisimoChocolate.com 096 984 2877

Recommended by Dara Montclare:  montclaredara@gmail.com

Rob's Reflexologia, massage therapy, foot reflexologia, relaxation

This is absolutely a must do in Cuenca. I just got back from my second treatment and it was again Amazing.

My first treatment I took was 60 minutes and now I tried the 90 minute session. Both sessions were very different but excellent in their own way.

This guy Rob knows what he's doing that's for sure.

I've been to many treatments around the world for the past 17 years. I've had some very serious injuries on my neck, spine, shoulders and arms.

Rob is an expert in working on the feet and getting curtain muscle groups and tensions of the body out of the way. I can highly recommend Rob's Reflexologia. Something you won't regret in beautifull Cuenca. Thank you.

Address: Rob's Reflexologia - Nicanor Aguilar 2-75 y Roberto Crespo - Cuenca

Contact information: rob.lumpkin@yahoo.com Whatsapp +1 954 873 5272 phone 096 975 7287

Recommended by Sergio Van Herck:  sergio.vhs@gmail.com

Salome Rosales Leon, bilingual facilitator

Need help transitioning into your new life in Cuenca? Do you need a translator, or a date night? Whether it’s Christmas shopping, mindfulness therapy, or clutch babysitting, you should call Salome Rosales. She’s amazing, a native Venezuelan and also speaks/writes fluent English and can help you with pretty much anything you can think of. She’s a licensed psychologist by trade, and makes life in Cuenca so much better. Her rate is $7 per hour, and her services include:

-Home/Elderly Care
-Mindfulness Therapy
-Clutch Babysitting

If you’re new to town, or simply just need help with any of the above or navigating life in Cuenca in general, please reach out to her. She’s quick to get back to you and one of the most patient and kind people we’ve ever met. Salome has helped, and continues to help our family with so much. We moved to Cuenca in August and we would be dead in the water without her. You won’t regret having her help.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: Salome.rl@gmail.com 097 903 6899

Recommended by Larenn Gotfried:  larenn.gotfried@gmail.com

Frankie Clark Amazon Fire TV, Online TV

Frankie is very knowledgeable on the subject of obtaining access to US live TV channels, tv shows and movies. I have my subscriptions to all my TV apps but was getting geo blocked in Cuenca. The VPN I had was not circumventing the block. After contacting Frankie, he recommended a specific one that did work. It allowed me access to my Amazon Prime Video US, Netflix US, etc. 

However, I still wanted access to US live TV. Frankie programmed my Amazon Fire stick and now I have free access to even more channels than I have at home with my cable, in addition to free TV shows and movies. 

I appreciated how Frankie comes in to install the stick and gives guidance on how to use it. He is also a such a pleasant person.

Address: WhatsApp +593 96 769 5037

Contact information: frankieecuador@gmail.com 096 769 5037

Recommended by Jullisa Koolman:  jullisakoolman@hotmail.com

Esther Zamora, beauty salon

I’m a guy and I’d like to recommend the great manicure and pedicure I’ve received at Esther’s Beauty Salon. I have a back injury and can’t comfortably cut my toenails and the care I get at Esther’s is second to none. I also get my haircut while I’m there and again I can vouch for the care and professionalism of all of the staff.

I also took a young female visitor from San Francisco to get a Mani/Pedi and she was very complimentary about the quality of the service she received and basically said it was far better than the studio she uses in California.

Esther speaks fluent English.

To top it all, Esther is about to open a second studio right next to the Jungle Gym, at Calle Larga and Benigno Malo.

Hours of operation: Tuesday to Saturday, 9 AM to 7 PM

Address: Sucre 16-25 and Miguel Vélez, San Sebastián.

Contact information: mezamoram123@icloud.com 098 730 6988

Recommended by Wanderlust Jim:  ynotchange@gmail.com

Expat Medical Advocacy, support service

Do you have nagging medical problems that have gone unaddressed? Maybe it because the medical processes in Ecuador can be challenging to navigate. Or maybe your language skills don't include medical terminology? Or maybe you are just plain intimidated by any sort of medical process?

My husband and I did okay getting appointments, etc. with IESS until some of the test results were not as clear as we had hoped. I hired Expat Medical Advocates to help me get the follow-up tests completed on a timely basis and to understand the recommendations of referring doctors. After many appointments/tests/follow-up tasks, I have finally reached healthy outcome.

I could not have done this without the help of Expat Medical Advocates. I would have given up after the first few appointments and then worried constantly if I had a serious illness. Or I would have paid out of pocket in the US and incurred a ridiculous medical debt. Expat Medical Advocates scheduled and attended all appointments and tests with me. They made sure my costs were low yet top quality. And they honestly cared about me.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: services.ema2018@gmail.com 096 951 4723

Recommended by Sarah Turosak: sturosak@gmail.com

Mongolian Grill - Sunrise Cafe, dinner event - Dec 19th

The Mongolian Grill at the Sunrise Café is an excellent meal of your choice of fresh shrimp, chicken, beef, and fresh vegetables grilled with the sauces and spices you like, all cooked right in front of you. Noodles can also be included. It comes with a drink and dessert.

We have eaten at this Mongolian Grill event numerous times and have enjoyed it every time. The atmosphere is quite festive too.

Seating times are at 5 PM and 7 PM on Dec 19th. Make a reservation by email (orlandoinecuador@gmail.com) or by calling Orlando at 098 824 6499.

Address: Sunrise Cafe - Calle Larga y Benigo Malo, Cuenca EC

Contact information: orlandoinecuador@gmail.com 098 824 6499

Recommended by Will Dunlap:  dunlapwc@msn.com

CosasPrep, safety and preparation items

It had been on my mind for a while to get a propane gas detector, and finally got around to buying two of them last week when I first came to Cuenca, I wasn't aware that there were accidents with these tanks due to leakage, so I feel much better having the detectors in my apartment. It was a pleasure dealing with Kent, he is very pleasant and informative, and seeing the little shop he has set up in the rear of Sunrise Cafe, with items such as solar battery charges, water filtration systems, personal protection devices, flashlights, and top of the line first aid kits, and much more. He also will take your blood pressure at no charge. I plan to go back to purchase a couple more items from him. Anyway, I'm glad these high quality items are available here, so hoping people check out what he has and make purchases from him.

Address: CosasPrep / Kent Mills / Calle Larga 9-40 y Benigno Malo (inside the Sunrise cafe), Cuenca.

Contact information: info@CosasPrep.com

Recommended by Marilyn Steenburgh:  marilyn.steenburgh@yahoo.com

Karla Bacigalupo, art and yoga

I had a private art and yoga session at my home with Karla where we practiced asanas to connect with our inner breath. After the yoga session, we practiced mandala therapy where we drew mandalas. It was a kind of meditative color therapy. I felt super comfortable with Karla and afterwards, my stress was totally gone. It had been having a hard week, and this really helped. I would highly recommend Karla’s art and yoga classes for kids or adults.

Address: In-home private lessons

Contact information:  098 491 5147

Recommended by Leah Breeden: 096 824 6279

Martha Morocho, house/apartment cleaning

A recommendation for an extraordinary woman to clean your house or apartment - I am giving a recommendation for Martha Morocho. She has cleaned our large, 3 bedroom, apartment for the past 8 months and we have been very pleased with her work. She is always on time. She needs little instruction on what needs to be done. She works hard and our apartment is spotless when she is finished. Martha is pleasant, and speaks enough English that communication is not a problem.

Address: 2885 Sanford Ave SW

Contact information: nicky200518@hotmail.com

Recommended by Sharon Flottman:  sharonflottman@gmail.com

Down Under, restaurant

Let's 'get down' at 'Down Under'--located in El Centro. The latest buzz-'-pet friendly' and photos going up to capture the moments of pleasure and happiness on the faces of the patrons who 'dig' Down Under. And why wouldn't you? Great, great food!!--- a menu that is polished and updated all the time. A very relaxing informal atmosphere---no loud music or TVs blaring soccer games. It is the only reason for this reviewer to go to El Centro and spend a few hours. The owners---Ren and Stephen--well-- the nicest guys you will meet-a combination of 'bartender' (listen with empathy) ---great conversationalists – Ren is bilingual and offers free Spanish lessons - (go on--buy a Mojito) and have that lesson -- but you don't have to! The lesson is well worth the price of admission. It really is the best place I have been to -- great vibes and food---on your own--in a group--great place. You always feel welcome.

Address: Calle Paseo tres de Noviembre Escalinata Juana de Oro

Contact information:  1 4 652 7575

Recommended by Barbara Suderman:  dahliadivino@gmail.com

Cristian Vásquez Ortiz, electrician / electrical engineer

I hired Cristian to do multiple repairs and esthetic improvements to previously-done electrical wiring. He showed up promptly with all necessary tools in hand and got right to work. He did everything in a few hours and his price was very reasonable. Cristian gave me several options in terms of where to place switch plates, etc., and showed that he is a real perfectionist.

I will definitely use him again.

Address: El Valle, La Pradera - Cuenca, Ecuador

Contact information: crismvo@ymail.com 098 821 9196

Recommended by Lisa Lloyd:  lisalloydxx@gmail.com

Cafe Guauoyo, restaurant

We live in Cuatro Rios, where this lovely place is located. We have grown very fond of their chili n beans which comes with a good size guacamole ‘n tortilla chips. Large size chili is very filling not to mention the sides, around $5. Their chicken sandwich is full of fresh chicken, Swiss cheese, tomatoes ‘n lettuce $4. Also, they have a daily soup that comes with a good portion of fresh warm bread. There are many other items, these are our favorites.

Address: 1 de Mayo y de Las Americas, in the Cuatro Rios Edificio

Recommended by Liz Gross: 093 967 8683

Marian O, interpreter and facilitator

I highly recommend Marian for interpreting or facilitating. She is fluent in English and Spanish, very intelligent, pleasant, and up to the task.

We felt that Marian understood our feelings and conveyed them exceptionally.

We had a very good experience using her services, and we will positively call on her again.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: marianexoxo@gmail.com 098 352 4625

Recommended by Marc King: 099 414 7100 marcking@mac.com

Architect Franklin Mejia, architect

Hi Eveyone, If you are looking for someone who fixes your house I know Franklin. He is a very good and super professional architect.

He is kind, polite and he will be so happy to help you.

He had repaired my house and made some fantastic changes. I really recommend him.

Address: 10 de Agosto avenue

Contact information:  098 734 3761

Recommended by Erika Vera: erikatatiana2511@hotmail.com

Maria Martinez, insurance- medical, auto

I am pleased to give a very positive recommendation for Maria Martinez, sale representative for medical and auto insurance.

We enjoyed working with this professional, caring, young woman. We purchased our medical insurance from her several months ago as we prepared for getting our residency visas. Recently she also helped us with selecting a good policy for insuring our vehicle. She is very patient and knowledgeable in explaining the policies so was an excellent help.

An additional benefit of working with Maria is that she also helped me with some of the steps during the process to obtain my Ecuadorian driver’s license. She was on time for our meetings and helped with translation as needed. Her friendly, gentle manner is a constant as she maneuvers through paperwork and the ever changing requirements that must be followed.

Please consider contacting Maria Martinez for any insurance questions or needs.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: ingmariafmartinez@gmail.com Maria Martinez  097 923 4353

Recommended by Teresa Zalot:  zalot1193@gmail.com

Finn Ljunggren, plant care

Finn took care of my plants for several weeks while we were away. He left a spreadsheet of dates, times and things he had done, such as pruning, filling my hummingbird feeder, watering, etc. They grew and bloomed under his care. I think my plants were sad to see me return.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: aljunggren@mac.com

Recommended by Lorraine Theodos:  lptheodos@gmail.com

Anya Mamounta, hairstylist

Anya is a fantastic hairstylist trained in Russia with extraordinary precision and attention to detail. And she is gentle; never tugging or causing my scalp pain or hurting my neck.

Anya's been cutting and coloring my hair since the beginning of the year - every single time it turns out perfectly. She's been given me a very natural-looking blonde in a slightly angled bob. I'm thrilled with her work.

She speaks Russian, Spanish and some English. We have fun communicating. Between Google Translate, charades and a picture of a hairstyle we do just fine.

To see her work you can find her on Instagram - anna_peluquera

To schedule an appointment, call 283 7228 or text on WhatsApp +593 99 113 6446 / 099 113 6446.

Address: Pensando en ti, Presidente Cordova y Vargas Machuca (Interior del parque Victor J. Cuesta)

Recommended by Carmen M: 098 174 6791

Karina Encalada, property management

Karina is a wonderful caretaker. She took care of our house and dog while we were in the US for about 6 weeks. She is completely trustworthy and her English is excellent. The whole family is wonderful and honest. You can leave things in her hands and have peace while you are gone. Highly, highly recommend.
593 99 597 2724

Address: near Parque Iberia on Ave. Dom Bosco

Recommended by Paula Robertson:  energizeddiva1@gmail.com

William Vinueza, Balance, Physiotherapist and Osteopathy

William Vinueza is a marvelous therapist. He has been treating me since my lumbar surgery at the recommendation of the surgeon, and I am amazed at his skill and almost intuitive knowledge during the treatment. His staff are terrific.

Address: Located in Edificio Los Columbus at Felipe II 2-50 y Isabel la Catolica

Contact information: equilibrio_tf@hotmail.com

Recommended by Ruth Sieber:  gardenras@yahoo.com

Pedro Pablo Capa, painter

I recently hired Pedro Capa to paint my new apartment. I highly recommend him. He brought the entire Sherwin Williams paint wheel with him and helped me select the exact colors that I wanted. We then went together to the SW paint store on Solano, and bought the 5 gallons of paint, brushes and rollers that were needed. I paid for the paint and supplies, but at his professional discount. He then came back the next day at 8:30 AM, and painted until 9:30 that night. He painted my living/dining room, kitchen, hallways, and master bedroom. His fee for labor was extremely reasonable. He was meticulous in the sanding and prep, and the paint job itself was excellent. I provided him lunch and dinner, and he preferred to work without really taking any break. He does not speak English, but we figured everything out (with some help from my super fluent neighbors!) He is 100% reliable, and I highly recommend. Attached are before and after photo and his business card. He lives in Azogues but works all over Azuay.

Address: Calle Gonzalez Suarez Via a San Marcos - Azogues

Contact information:  098 338 6067

Recommended by Janet Engel:  jengel99@gmail.com

ARamirez, hair designer

Upon entering ARamirez Hair Design, Maria greeted us and quickly put my anxiety at ease. We arrived in Cuenca one month ago and I was concerned with finding someone who would be able to work with my troublesome short hair. After conversing with Arturo we were able to design a style that would work for me. This is the best haircut I have ever had! The cost for his hair design and quality of cut was very reasonable and is far less than the States. I walked away confident that I now have a place to get my hair cut and I'm anxious to return. Arturo is the best!
Darla Thomas.

Address: Av. 12 de Abril 2-11 y Arirumba

Contact information:  07 281 6708

Recommended by Darla Thomas:  imi.ruu@yahoo.com

Cosecha 93, liquor distributor

Your favorite bottles of wine delivered right to your door? At a discount? It doesn’t get much better than that. At their store on Luis Morena Mora, you simply pick out the bottles you want, they apply the discount, and you don’t have to schlep them home because they’ll deliver. The delivery guy was quite surprised when I tipped him $2! Here’s a tip: Combine your visit to this liquor distributor with a visit to nearby Luvimar for seafood and Hansel, Gretel for lunch, and the new Ital Deli (the latter two right around the corner on Roberto Crespo).

Address: Avenida Luis Morena Mora s/n y Nicanor Aguilar

Contact information: info@cosecha93.com.ec 404 9948

Recommended by Carolyn V. Hamilton:  carolynvhamilton@gmail.com

DishedUp by Nat, food/entertainment

This is some of the best home cooked meals from around the world I have had here in Cuenca. My husband and I like to eat out a lot and we love international flavors. Unfortunately, many of the international foods we have had here lack tremendously in flavor. "DishedUp by Nat" has nailed everything from a traditional meatloaf with an amazing BBQ sauce to an Australian Gingered Beef Goulash. They offer a great variety from around the world including an exquisite Butter Chicken. Freshly made meals or frozen meals are available. Delivery only, which is so convenient.

Address: Instagram: DishedUpByNat

Contact information: dishedupbynat@gmail.com 099 579 2357

Recommended by Suheil Lopez:  suheillopez@live.com

Centro Dental Vega, dentist

Went to the dentist today after many years of avoiding it. I was pleasantly surprise with Dr. Juan Fernando Vega's gentile touch. He had a very calm presence that put my nerves to rest. And he knows how to speak English as well.

Address: Aurelio Aguilar 1-59 Y Av. Solano Edf. DTM 2do. Piso, Consultorio 201 Cuenca

Contact information: clinicadentalvega@gmail.com

Recommended by Vanessa Raber:  acseites@vanessaraber.com

Pepper Mill, restaurant

Have had almuerzo and breakfast at this restaurant several times; it's outstanding. Two visitors I had just loved the place, said the dinner they had there was excellent. If you like an upscale place at a reasonable price, with great service, you should give it a try. It's on a busy corner, but quiet inside and they play tasteful music. Love that it's glass enclosed floor to ceiling, so great for people watching. I wish them all the best with this endeavor.

Address: Tarqui 11-87 y Presidente Cordova

Contact information:  099 155 1919

Recommended by Marilyn Steenburgh:  marilyn.steenburgh@yahoo.com

Luvimar, fish store

We've been shopping at Luvimar since they opened. Luis, the owner is enthusiastic about his products and has researched and developed strong relationships with his suppliers. We've found the quality to be consistently first class. Luis speaks fluent English and a visit to the store is always a pleasure. We regularly buy salmon, shrimp and tilapia nuggets. Yum.

Address: Luis Moreno Mora #5-85 y Roberto Crespo Toral

Contact information: luvimar.ec@gmail.com 099 439 6619

Recommended by Brian Miles:  tncnna@gmail.com

Khalida Spa

Khalida Spa is a soothing and revitalizing getaway in, the middle of Cuenca. My husband and I visited today. You are greeted with sweet smelling candles and aromatherapy scents when you walk in the cozy office area. After checking in, you are given a locker and asked to change into a robe and slippers which they provide. While walking towards the changing room i saw the large, clean and professional room used for aesthetic services like facials. I will return to try it out. But, today we both enjoyed full bodied massages. we walked through a lovely courtyard with trees, flowers a jade plant and a clean pond to get to the massage room. They give you a bubbly foot bath before you enter the warm inviting massage room. the massages are terrific on the tables lined with heating pats. they also, use towels and blankets which are warmed on towel-warming rack like you see in many bathrooms. I enjoyed the scents though...they were sometimes too overpowering. And, the music was soothing. Our massages cost $35 per person.

Address: Julio Montalvo 4-49 y Augustin Cueva

Contact information: info@khalidaspa.com

Recommended by Erin Lee:  erin32_1999@yahoo.com

Mompiche Yoga Retreat

Durga' s Tiger Camp/ Retreat for Yoga Shamanism & Surf in Mompiche Beach

Surfing the wave of spiritual consciousness

Ongoing program from the 1st of November, 2018 to the 15th of January, 2019
Classes will be available every day and you can come from one day to a month under reservation.
Classes are offered in English and Spanish.

Daniela Ordoñez, dentist

I had not been to a dentist in a seriously long time, and only the loss of a molar forced the inevitable upon me. I looked around a good bit for dentists that were well recommended and checked out some websites before deciding on Doctora Daniela Ordoñez. The appointment for a consultation was very straightforward using her website. I was not surprised to hear that the work would be substantial, and Daniela made very clear to me what would be required and put the whole thing in writing with the associated costs. Her English is perfect, having grown up in the US. Periodontal cleaning was high on the list to stabilize some loose teeth, as well as three extractions of defunct molars and an incisor, and the insertion of three cantilever bridges. You can imagine how much I was looking forward to all that!

It is now six weeks later, and this wonderful dentist has given me back a smile to be proud of. There was a lot to be done, and many appointments, but throughout this time Dra Daniela was so patient and diligent in her work. She is a perfectionist and will not accept anything other than what was best for me. She went to great pains to make sure I did not experience any! The two molar extractions, which were no more than broken stumps, were totally painless, and I did not even realize she had removed them. The incisor, again I felt nothing. My only regret is I did not do this years ago. She made that whole process as pain-free and comfortable as it is possible to do.

I cannot recommend Daniela too highly. She is completely trustworthy, her prices are very reasonable indeed, and best of all she is a very likeable lady.

Her website is : www.cuencadentist.com

Address: Acropolis Building. Jose Peralta Av and 12 de Abril Av. Office 103. Cuenca.

Contact information: dra.danielaoi@gmail.com 098 718 2083

Recommended by Alex Pryde:  garfieldpryde@gmail.com

Frank the Plumber, plumbing/calefon

I'd like to recommend Frank Pauta for any plumbing or calefon issues you might need to have addressed. We live in an older Ecuadorian house, and were having problems with our calefon. I called Frank, who responded right away and scheduled a time to come. He arrived on time. Turns out the the calefon hadn't been wired correctly. He fixed this very quickly. His price was incredibly reasonable, and he was efficient, professional, and neat. Frank lived in the US for 15 years and speaks perfect English. In addition, he's just a really nice guy, and a great plumber. Call Frank if you need any plumbing, calefon, or washer/dryer work done.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: frankpauta04@gmail.com 099 081 0294\

Recommended by Denis Cruickshank:  deniscruickshank@yahoo.com

Havana Blues, restaurant

Wonderful experience at Havana Blues. We have eaten there three times in the last week. All three meals were delicious. There is an American style breakfast, Wonderful choices for lunch from Cuban sandwiches to Salads and the dinner is fantastic.

The cuisine is Cuban and the owners speak English and are incredibly friendly. Right next to the broken bridge. There’s also outdoor seating which is so nice as that is rare here in Cuenca.

On Friday night there is music.

Highly recommend this place and I hear they have even started a $3 almuerzo this week.

A great way to spot it is there is a fantastic mural of an older Cuban woman smoking a cigar.

There is also a bar with top shelf liquor.

The restaurant is incredibly clean too with clean restrooms.

Address: 3 de November next to the Broken Bridge

Contact information:  098 868 2435

Recommended by Stephanie Werba:  werbucks@gmail.com

EAT Restaurant

My wife and I truly love the new EAT restaurant in the Castle on 3 de Noviembre just below the new Vegetable Bar. My favorite is the meatloaf sandwich on baguette. My wife's is the shrimp po'boy. We both like the lamb burger, and the next time we're there Linda want to try out the Uruguayan cheese steak.

Do yourself a favor, and try it out. BTW, you can go up to the Vegetable Bar's great balcony and order food from EAT. A great mid-day luncheon experience.

Address: The Castle, 3 de Noviembre just downstream from the Broken Bridge.

Contact information:  098 935 8169

Recommended by Ray Lewis:  ray_lewis@me.com

Angelo Palmiero, chef

I recommend Angelo Palmiero for work in the kitchen, helping you with parties, or fixing you food. He has helped me several times with cake and gluten free tortillas. He is very easy-going and excellent at what he does! He speaks a little English, but more when it's about food.

Address: He will come to your house.

Contact information: blavado@hotmail.com 096 274 5666

Recommended by Susan Schenck:  livefoodfactor@yahoo.com