logo HTML5



Megachips, gourmet potato chips

We had the opportunity to try Robert's homemade potato chips at an artesan fair a few weeks ago. They are simply the best chips, or snack of any kind, we've ever tasted. They're made with organic potatoes and good, non-toxic oil, then lightly seasoned. The crispy/crunchy texture is as good as the taste, and this is one snack you can feel good about eating. The gourmet chips come in four delicious flavors -- garlic, salt, onion and picante. If you want to try them (or if you've already tasted and want to buy more), Robert will be at the Cuenca Holistic Health Expo this Saturday, October 21st, at the Mall del Rio Convention Center. Also check out the Facebook page: Megachips ajosalcebollapicante

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: carina.roche@icloud.com

Recommended by Roxy Thompson:  roxannethompson1@icloud.com

Little Pie Factory, homemade food delivery

I just wanted to let everyone know how great the meals are that Melissa makes.
She puts her heart and extensive experience into her baking and it really shows.

I've been living in Cuenca for over 5 years now and I have to be honest. Lately, I've been missing being able to buy healthy pre-cooked meals that taste great. The kind of meals that I can freeze and then just warm up on a lazy rainy day.

Last week I ordered the Chicken Pot Pie and the Shrimp and Sea Bass Pot Pie for Sunday night dinner for my husband and I. Served with a tossed salad, dinner was perfect.

We also ordered a Quiche Florentine to eat during the week and it's fantastic! So flavorful, creamy and cheesy.

Most of Melissa's meals can be frozen and then warmed up later, which is great when you don't feel up to making a meal from scratch. All her meals are home-made with the freshest ingredients.

Give My Little Pie Factory a try - you won't be disappointed.

P.S. I just want to say Melissa didn't ask me for a review. She is gonna be surprised when she sees this.

Address: Cuenca, Ecuador

Contact information: melissamaher010@gmail.com

Recommended by Carol Babin:  carol.baibn@gmail.com

Ali's Pita Bread, pita bread-hummus

Ali's pita bread is the most delicious scrumptious pita bread I have ever sunk my teeth into. It is super fresh and out of this world tasty. And you can't beat the price. I have bought 14 bags already. It makes a lovely gift because it is supurb bread. It has no preservatives or chemicals added. All natural. I even requested to leave the sugar out which Ali did. Don't even think twice about not ordering this bread. You will be so happy you did. I was even given a complimentary hummus to try out which was also delicious. 7 breads for $1. Hummus $3.25 /200gm

Address: Cuenca Ali's cell: 098 380 9210

Contact information: ali_alkhoja2000@yahoo.com

Recommended by Evelyn Donald:  cuencabutterfly@yahoo.com

La Quinua, restaurant, vegetarian/vegan

We recently spent 10 days in Cuenca, and on 3 of those days, went to La Quinua for a wonderful almuerzo. It is located in El Centro, on Benigno Malo 12-75 near Antonio Vega Munoz.

Cesar serves delicious fresh juice, soup, a large plate of food and dessert, all for just $3.80. Whether you are a vegetarian or not, you will really enjoy the delicious food from his kitchen.

Please stop by for lunch. You won't be disappointed.

Address: Benigno Malo 12-75 y Vega Munoz Cuenca, Ecuador

Contact information:  +593 98 310 8989

Recommended by Mary Warren:  libsick@gmail.com

Daniel Mocha, car registrations

Daniel walked me thru this somewhat cumbersome process. Here are the steps: First stop is one of the banks that will accept payment of the transfer tax and then the licensing fee for the upcoming year. You would also pay any outstanding fines accrued to the vehicle (plates stay with the vehicle for life). Daniel then does an assessment of the required materials for the vehicle (includes flashlight, fire extinguisher, tool set, first aid kit, safety triangles, etc.). Anything missing and he goes with you to Corral to obtain them. Now on to EMOV, where the car gets inspected for stuff above and they do a functionality inspection (lights working, brakes, tires, shocks, emissions, etc.) any defects need to be repaired. Simultaneously, you are processing the matricula (title) transfer and paying the local tax (United Cooks association. No, I have no idea why it’s called that). You shuttle back and forth between three different windows. Daniel knows the staff and best times to go. I was glad to let them test his patience and not mine. Highly recommended for your mental well-being and confidence you're not being singled out or taken advantage of. Daniel will price a la carte if you wish to handle some of this on your own. His English is very good as well. We've known him and his family for over a year now.

Address: Avenida Ricardo Duran

Contact information: dimm98@hotmail.com 098 176 7735

Recommended by Doug Cutler:  dcutler@mundaca.com

Veronica's in Quito, bed and breakfast

Veronica – Quito overnights and tours, only 15 minutes from the airport (book though Air BnB)
A most pleasant surprise, that keeps on giving.
Whether you are just staying one night to catch your next flight or visiting Quito for a longer stay
I highly recommend this recently opened gem. The B&B is a rustic, traditional farm house that has been remodeled, with a fantastic view.

Veronica, or her husband John, will pick you up from the airport and drop you back off for your flight.
If you have time before your next flight, they will offer to take you around Quito.
Veronica is very knowledgeable about the area, the history, and cultural roots of the Ecuadorian people. 

The place is comfortable, clean and has a great fireplace.

Nena and her family live next door. She is a terrific cook and took me mora berry picking on the property while my husband was napping. Then, she made mora juice for us the next morning.
Breakfast is included with choice of granola, fruit, and homemade yogurt, or eggs and toast. Other meals upon request.

My wife and I have stayed there twice and look forward to going back again.

Address: Calle Rio Chiche, Quito, Ecuador

Contact information: veroandino@gmail.com 593 9 727 8221

Recommended by David Sturm: 099 503 0770

Manny Alveraz, local driver translator

Manny is a very reliable and an excellent driver. He speaks perfect English. Manny has helped me a lot, taking me to stores, doctor appointments E. R. at hospital and anything else I needed. His rates are very good. He can help you with anything you need.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information:  098 693 2535

Recommended by Ken Mokler:  rotaallen@yahoo.com

Arturo Nieto Hatfield, appliance repair

Arturo is a knowledgeable and competent repairman for all appliances - washer, dryer, refrigerator, stove/oven. He's adjusted my calefon, replaced leaky washing machine tubing, innovated a vent for the calefon so the pilot wouldn't go out in the wind, refastened a loose oven door and added insulation on my request to the door and back resulting in more heat retention and better temperature control. He also fixed a faulty pilot on our propane heater. Very reasonable prices, nice guy, and he speaks some English.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: arturonieto61@yahoo.com 099 965 8066

Recommended by Manya Arond-Thomas:  manya@awakeintheandes.com

Jaime's Computer Repair, computer repair

Jaime, is a genius when it comes to computer repair. He had my laptop up and running after the hard drive bit the dust. He offered valuable solutions to other issues with my tablet and iPhone. His prices are reasonable and he speaks perfect English. He is knowledgeable in Windows, Apple and Linux. I recommend him very highly.

Address: El Vergel, Cuenca

Contact information: jiame.matovelle@gmail.com 099 571 1956

Recommended by Bob Wilkins:  bellowdad@gmail.com

Rectificadora Balarezo, engine rebuilding

My name is Gabo, I am 27-years-old and owner of an old import car which I love. I had the need to repair the engine of my Mitsubishi Lancer 1997, so I asked my uncle where to go, he recommended a few workshops, but I decided to go for Rectificadora Balarezo, because of the costs. So I dropped the headblock, engine block pistons, and carnkshatft to be fixed, including grinding, surface finishing, piston replacements, valve and guide replacements, all for a great price in comparison to other places I visited. I mean I spent $150 to rebuild my engine and then head to a mechanic to reassemble it with new parts. A total of $756.00 where invested and the car is running like a new one.

So my recommendation is to all of you guys that are searching for a good, and cheap place to take your engine for a fix or even a tune-up, go to this venue, the owner speaks perfect English and the workers are well trained, guaranteed.

Address: Vega Muñoz 3-07 y Tomas Ordoñez

Contact information: info@rbalarezo.com 099 590 1839 / 07 411 5172

Recommended by Gabriel Avila Abril: 098 382 4949

Recommendation for Misael Chipana, teacher

Learning Spanish (even enough to get around) is difficult (especially when you are my age!), Believe me when I say I have tried, and tried, and tried. Misael has made such a difference that in just two weeks I actually Speak and Understand more than from all the other tries combined. The secret? To me, it is that he first concentrates on how you pronounce each letter, working with you to teach your mouth to move with your brain. Amazing (although you will have sore jaw muscles jajaja) at first. He is trained in linguistics and truly understands languages and what they are and how to impart that to the student. He relates lessons to you -- your situation and needs. Just want casual Spanish for taxis and shopping? No problem. In-depth to read novels? No problem. A young, energetic and personable young man to boot. Happy to take you on field trips. The best? He comes to your home on your schedule. Fees? So reasonable - $5.00 per hour per person (couple is $8.00), Feel free to drop me an email if you would like more information. Truly Misael is amazing. Happy to be his reference as are a number of my amigos.

Address: Alberto Munoz, Cuenca

Contact information:  098 708 3624

Recommended by Sandra Kraft: sandykrafty@gmail.com

Misael Chipana, teacher

Learning Spanish (even enough to get around) is difficult (especially when you are my age!), Believe me when I say I have tried, and tried, and tried. Misael has made such a difference that in just two weeks I actually Speak and Understand more than from all the other tries combined. The secret? To me, it is that he first concentrates on how you pronounce each letter, working with you to teach your mouth to move with your brain. Amazing (although you will have sore jaw muscles jajaja) at first. He is trained in linguistics and truly understands languages and what they are and how to impart that to the student. He relates lessons to you -- your situation and needs. Just want casual Spanish for taxis and shopping? No problem. In-depth to read novels? No problem. A young, energetic and personable young man to boot. Happy to take you on field trips. The best? He comes to your home on your schedule. Fees? So reasonable - $5.00 per hour per person (couple is $8.00), Feel free to drop me an email if you would like more information. Truly Misael is amazing. Happy to be his reference as are a number of my amigos.

Address: Alberto Munoz, Cuenca

Contact information:  098 708 3624

Recommended by Sandra Kraft: sandykrafty@gmail.com

Viva La Food, street food

Food glorious food. Viva La Food (a new concept here) is serving gourmet street food at amazingly reasonable prices. Ben Passini has created a culinary event -- all you can fit in a wrap: fill with Smoked Ribs, Beef Tenderloin, Stir Fried Veggies, Beans, Risotto, Quinoa Salad and all the Salsa you want. Tooooooo yummy for words. Their pop-up street food cart is just in front of Hotel Oro Verde on Ordonez Lasso. 12-3:30 and 5-11 PM. Great concept -- my hat is off to Ben and Maluchi for bringing this cosmopolitan concept to Cuenca. Simply delicious. Fun -- a great place to meet and eat and make new friends. If you don't know Ben and Maluchi you are in for a treat and some great new friends there too.

Address: Ordonez Lasso in front of Hotel Oro Verde

Contact information:  099 122 3824

Recommended by Sandra Kraft:  sandykrafty@gmail.com

MetroCar, car dealership

MetroCar - As we decided to purchase a car in Ecuador we visited MetroCar. We were immediately greeted and met Jose Vintimilla. José is fully bilingual, he was very professional, knowledgeable, friendly and began by asking us questions and explained the difference between the cars we were considering to purchase. We left the car dealer and Jose feeling confident. Then we decided to visit another dealer, competitor...what a difference in service and approach - the other car dealer attempted to charge us for items included in the car package for an extra $1,600. We definitely recommend MetroCar, Jose Vintimilla and his Manager Francisco Gonzalez to help you with your car purchase.

Address: Remigio Crespo Cuenca

Contact information:  098 729 6427

Recommended by Liz Shirk:  elshirk@bellsouth.net

Harsha Hari Nair, English teacher

Harsha is a excellent teacher.

We started the class with her in January and we learned pronunciation, reading, grammar, writing, spelling and vocabulary. Her class is very good and we have class with Harsha four hours a week and all this time Harsha taught us a lot of things and things that we don’t know about English. Harsha is a good teacher and a excellent person. We highly recommend her for anyone who wants to learn English. She has a good experience in teaching.

Address: Benigno Malo 6-75 y Presidente Cordova

Contact information: harshaharinair1@gmail.com

Recommended by Josue Siguenza: 098 738 8163 josuesiguenzaa@gmail.com

Ribs and More, restaurant

Amazing smoked ribs. We ordered the full-size baby back ribs and full-size St Louis ribs. These are smoked on site, and come to the table "dry" and you can add the sauces there and mix and match if you wish. The "smoke ring" was obvious and mouth-watering. The entrees came with 2 sides each. The French fries, baked beans and chili con carne were excellent. We didn't try some of their salads - next time. And there were 3 BBQ sauces that we could use at the table - all were delightfully tasty and tangy. More than enough to fill us thoroughly, and still take some home. Since we made room for their delicious homemade carrot cake with buttercream frosting.

The staff and owners were pleasant and attentive. Do search on Facebook for them - search for CostillasYMas so you get all their hours and updates. Apparently, they are open for lunch too Wed-Sat from noon-3 (maybe they open a bit earlier like 11:30) and for dinner Wed-Sat 5 - 10 or so. And Sunday from noon-5 PM. They are doing a wine-tasting on Saturday which sounds very cool - requires reservations though, and it sounds like they're having some special food items available for that tasting too.

We're looking forward to trying them again for lunch and dinner again.

Address: Carlos Teran y Julio Matovelle - frente al Parque de las Candelas

Contact information: robert@ribsandmore.ec

Recommended by Deb Miller:  debjmiller9@gmail.com

Bodhi's Burgers, restaurant

Had lunch at Bodhi's Burgers Tuesday and the experience exceeded expectations. The space is small, but very clean and tastefully decorated in a US style 1950's diner. There is an outdoor seating area beneath a covered deck with an exceptional view.

You probably would not call the burgers "gourmet" fare, nor do the prices reflect that. The largest burger on the menu, a double Bodhi Burger sells for $3.50, while the going rate for most burgers in town is at least double that price. The burgers are, however, very good and reflect the diner style motif the place seems to be aiming for. Also on offer is a fish sandwich that one person in our party said was very tasty.

All in our party agreed that the homemade ice cream is, "not to be missed." Four flavors, chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and peanut butter. Two generous scoops for $1.50 with complimentary chocolate sauce if desired. Or, you can have the ice cream in a generous sized milkshake for $4. And, don't shy away from the peanut butter, it's unique but amazingly good.

The address for the location is Mariscal Sucre 17-80, but it's down the hill (west) of San Sebastian Plaza, on the same side of the street as the Museum of Modern Art.

Address: Mariscal Sucre 17-80

Contact information:  095 906 0381

Recommended by Ken R:  user.ken.r@gmail.com

Waffles de Belgica, restaurant

Cuenca's legendary Belgium Waffle place has moved.

They're now situated within the courtyard next to the CIDAP museum, along the river on 3 de Noviembre just west of the escalera at the base of Calle Hermano Miguel.

Presently their open hours are: Thursday – Sunday, 10 AM - 5:30 PM.

Yesterday I had a most deliciously flaky waffle (still warm!) with a scoop of chocolate ice cream (just $2) - Yummm!

Address: Next to the CIDAP museum on 3 de Noviembre, just west of the base of the stairs at Hermano Miguel

Contact information:  098 488 6258

Recommended by Dyanne Kruger:  TravelnLass@gmail.com

Tienda Néctar, health food/holistic treatment

I highly recommend the magnesium oil massage. Had one on Friday and it was amazing. My back feels great.

Only $25 for a really thorough full body deep tissue massage. Treat yourself now.

Address: Benigno Malo 12-27 and Gaspar Sangurima

Contact information: taniyanni@yahoo.com

Recommended by Irene Hogarth:  irenehogarth67@gmai.com

G&F Home Painting, painting and cleaning

This team of professionals was recommended to me by my excellent hair stylist Erich who had this crew in to do his new digs – beautiful.

They re-painted in the beautiful chosen colors and transformed my house into a place I love even more. What is left to be said except that they were really, really punctual--clean, thorough, polite, thorough--( well it bears repeating), punctual and focused.

They did not waste time, make costly mistakes, create a lot of noise, leave their things lying around. They always cleaned up at the end of the day and put their things tidily to one side.

A very lovely all round experience.

Gustavoe speaks English and is very polite, respectful and helpful.

Address: Calle de Los Cerezos y El Sucre

Contact information: gusgt19@hotmail.com 098 649 0137

Recommended by Barbara Suderman:  barbara.suderman@yahoo.com

Cuenca Bagels, fresh handmade bagels

We have ordered from Cuenca Bagels several times and never been disappointed with the quality of their product! Each bagel is baked to order and comes out exactly as you want. Cuenca Bagels uses top quality ingredients and a lot of care to make sure of excellence every time.

You can place orders on their website: www.CuencaBagels.com and specify the size, flavor and the date you want to pick them up or have them delivered.

Give them a try. We bet you'll be as pleased as we are with their bagels and their service.

Address: El Centro, Cuenca

Contact information: cuencabagels@yahoo.com

Recommended by Walt and Karen Panko:  walt@waltpanko.com

Felipe Vintimilla, free Spanish lessons

We've been learning Spanish from Felipe Vintimilla at his restaurant, A Pedir de Boca, for more than a year. Felipe is an outstanding teacher who volunteers his time to help extranjeros like us learn Spanish. Though the classes are totally free, they're serious, focusing on the elements of grammar you need to understand and speak Spanish well.

Felipe is beginning a new round of classes the second week in September. I highly recommend his classes for anyone who wants to learn Spanish. If you're just beginning, the beginners class will start with the very basics. If you've learned verb tenses and conjugations but want more conversation and practice, the intermediate class is for you.

Spanish again at A Pedir de Boca

Beginners: Wednesdays from 3 PM to 5 PM beginning 13 September

Advanced: Thursdays from 3 PM to 5 PM beginning 14 September

Cost: totally free!

Address: Benigno Malo 5-54 y Calle Larga

Contact information:  099 592 1215

Recommended by Scott Gibson:  sa_gibson@yahoo.com

360 Legal Services

Hello, 360 Legal Services is a law firm established in Cuenca by attorneys Cristian Calle and Maria Jose Ramirez. With over 20 years of combined experience we specialize in: Civil law Corporate law Family law Collections Business law - entrepreneurs and business creation When dealing with legal matters, communication is key. Favio Alvarado, our business partner and in-house court-certified Translator/Interpreter, will maintain open communication lines with our clients, in English, at all times. Call/email today to schedule an appointment or to find out more about how we can help you. Monday-Friday 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM

Address: 10 de Agosto Ave. and Francisco Moscoso, Torres del Yanuncay Building, 2nd floor, Office B-2 (across from the ECU 911 Bldg.), Cuenca.

Business contact information:
099 534 6192

Favio Alvarado

Cuenca Property Professionals, real estate

We are writing to express my pleasure with the real estate agent Savannah, who represented us in our recent rental of a modern 3 bedroom, 2 bath, fully furnished apartment right in the heart of El Centro.

Savannah guided us in the right direction of what we wanted from making the offer and closing the deal. We credit Savannah with a smooth, stress-free rental or even buying experience

This is our third time renting here in Cuenca, and was by far the easiest and fastest experience.

Savannah is savvy, personable and knows the market inside and out. We never could have gotten such a good price and such a great location without her.

To reiterate: we are nothing but pleased with Savannah and her expertise and we recommend her to everyone who is either looking to rent or buy.

Address: Puertas Del Sol

Contact information: cuencapropertyprofessionals@gmail.com

Recommended by Robert smith:  comunasonica@gmail.com

Mostafa Adawi, computer tech support

Mostafa he is a very intelligent and smart guy. He fixed my laptop (Software) problems and cleaned My computer hardware , Its very fast now . If you are having any problems with your laptop or pc Mostafa is the right guy , I highly recommend him .

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: Adawim52@yahoo.com 099 408 7897

Recommended by John Wayne:  Adison_lok@hotmail.com

México Lindo Querido, restaurant Mexican food

For the best real flavor Mexican food, Mexico Lindo y Querido Restaurant is the place to go.

The menu has some of the most popular dishes, we tried Chilaquiles con Pollo and they were extremely good, We also tried the Torta and it's a feast, not only in taste but in size, 2 people can enjoy one and be satisfied. We were very pleased with the quality, the quantity and the cost, overall this place deserves a visit, bring a friend and be ready to enjoy delicious food, service can be a bit slow so have plenty of time when you come in, but it's worth the wait.

Address: Baltazara de Calderon 2-91 & Miguel Heredia - Across from Charlie's Bakery

Contact information:  099 561 1061

Recommended by George Garcia:  jgarciagb@me.com

Intercontinental Travel Maria, travel agency

If you need someone to help you with flight travel especially from a foreign country, look no further. Maria spent about a hour and a half, with my wife and I recently. She accommodated us with our travel dates and times every way she could. Trying to get us the cheapest flights possible. When we finally agreed upon all the dates and times she said let me try a little "magic" and ended up saving another $200. Maria speaks good English also.

Address: 193 y, Paucarbamba & Avenida Manuel J. Calle

Contact information: 7-281-6715

Recommended by Nathanael Jackson: jackjajunk@gmail.com

Ribs and More, restaurant

The first time we ate there we both had the ribs; it was like closing our eyes and we were back in North America. Not only are they meaty but the choice of sauces can make any palate happy.

On Wednesday we took advantage of the special on Italian Sausages. Once again top notch.

It opens at 5 from Wednesday thru Saturday. Give your taste buds a treat.

Address: The restaurant is a block and a half West of Noe (on the block where the park starts)

Contact information: robertjlong1840@gmail.com

Recommended by Bob Gordon:  Bob@incamint.com

Fratello Cafe Bistro, vegan cafe

Located on the Tomebamba River. On 12 de Abril between Loja and Sucre. White building with black iron gate. Open for lunch and dinner.

I recommend Fratello Vegan Cafe & Bistro and encourage you to give it a try. The menu is vegan and filled with a variety of yummy selections from savory to dessert. I've been there twice and both times LOVED the nachos with their lentil "meat" and cashew "cheese". They have a good wine list, craft beers, gourmet coffees, and all at good prices. It is river front with outdoor seating (with to without cover), stone gas fire pits, modern decor, and right on the Tomebamba.

Address: 12 de Abril (between Loja and Sucre) y Ramerio Tameriz and Guyas

Contact information:  099 575 6158

Recommended by Wally Davis:  southoftheboarder21015@gmail.com

Amigos de Manolo, hotel for dogs

The Friends of Manolo. Do not worry anymore about the care of your pet, they have the perfect place to give the care to which it is accustomed.

The proceeds go to a local animal shelter. If you want to help, you can contact by phone.

Address: Challuabamba

Contact information:  099 181 1039

Recommended by Brian Mora: 099 545 6551

Luis "Edison" Cabrera, wood, metal, painting

Edison was at my apartment repairing gaps in my wooden floors for six hours the other day. He had quoted me $60 for the job but I don't know if he knew how long it would actually take. At the end, he stuck with that price, but I gave him a bit more for his conscientious work.

He doesn't speak much English but we figured it out.

He also does wood and metal work plus painting and seems to be a general handyman.
Give him a try.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: Leddyss.10@gmail.com 099 112 8608

Recommended by M. Barry:  imfortune8@yahoo.com

James porter, real estate

James Porter is amazing, he was able to help me find a rental for a three-bedroom, 2 bathroom apartment in the gringo area of town that was perfect for me. He handled the negations with the owner, he got me a fully furnished apartment including the aliquot for less than four hundred and fifty a month, he held my hand from start to finish. He has such a witty and charming sense of humor that I was a little saddened that I have signed my lease only because his company was so enjoyable.

Everything he did showed he cared for me as a client and he showed me there's a better apartment for a better price. He helped me find my perfect apartment. Wish there were more people like him.

The telephone number below is whatsapp for contacting him. Just enter the number and you will find his contact.

Address: Ceunca

Contact information: oceans2207@gmail.com 099 579 0154

Recommended by Sasha D:  slytherinsasha@gmail.com

Pho Vietnamita Casa, Asian food

Didn't quite know what to expect as any Vietnamese food I have had in Cuenca prior has been in the just OK category. The restaurant is unpretentious but that is OK as they are usually the ones that will surprise you as this one did. The soups come in medium or large bowls and you have 7 or 8 different bowls of soups to choose from. You have plum sauce, Siratchi sauce, hot seed oil, limes, bean sprouts, fresh basil all available to add to your soup(s). I would like to mention that the spring rolls were very good with a peanut sauce and or sweet sauce. 

I wasn't expecting much but my expectations were far exceeded once I had my first spoonful of Pho soup. For an extra bonus you will get a pleasant helping of Taylor if you’re lucky the server as she is a pure delight.

I know I will be back soon for those cool days and nights for this outstanding soup.

Address: Parque San Sebastian (in Carolina Smokehouse)

Contact information: jcuencaec@gmail.com 098 456 9199

Recommended by Joe Cook:  jcook1313@aol.com

Doris, wonderful caregiver/helper

I am writing to recommend my caregiver/helper, Doris. Doris is a young Ecuadorian woman. Doris has cared for me, for over a year, since I suffered a serious illness. I am now able to care for myself and no longer need her assistance. She has done everything for me from helping me after I shower, helping me dress, cleaned my house, purchased my medications and made sure I took them when needed. Literally she will do anything you need and always with a smile. She is always prompt and very trustworthy. Doris doesn't speak English, but we have communicated very well through google translated. I think of her as my daughter and you will too. Contact me and will arrange for you to meet her. You can contact me at 098 302 3192

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: rminki1953@yahoo.com 097 959 2910

Recommended by Ray Mink: 098 302 3192 rmink1953@yahoo.com

Double D's Delights, bagel company

We've tried both garlic bagels and blueberry bagels and they are delicious. The texture is perfect, and the flavors work really well. We're buying a couple dozen at a time as Dawn told us that they freeze perfectly, and they do. Once frozen they can go straight into the toaster oven for a tasty snack. Great bagels and great service! Highly recommended.

Address: Cuenca. You can get in touch via their Facebook page 'Double D's Delights'.

Contact information: doubledsdelightscuenca@gmail.com 096 802 2545

Recommended by Adam Mileusnic:  adam.mileusnic@gmail.com

Lomeda Montgomery, interior decoration

Lomeda is helping me decorate my apartment. We're changing some furnishing, hanging my artwork and adding new accessories. She's working mostly with things I already have so I am not spending much money. She also can refinish and stencil furniture. I appreciate her talent and artistic sensibility and recommend her to anyone who wants to improve a home here in Cuenca.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: lomedamont@yahoo.com 099 469 1112

Recommended by Emma Lawton:  emmalawtonenglish@gmail.com

Double D Bagels, homemade bagels

We just tried the bagels made by Double D Bagels, a new company, and enjoyed them tremendously.

After trying each variety they produce, we ordered both Jalapeño and Cheese, and Blueberry bagels. They were ready on Saturday morning as promised and delivered after a phone call from Dawn to make sure we were ready to receive them. The bagels were absolutely delicious. The jalapeño and cheese were perfectly picante and the blueberry was naturally sweet from the fruit without being overly sweet.

Both Dawn and Deb (the Double D’s of the company name) were pleasant and helpful throughout the process of our tasting, ordering and getting it delivered. We recommend Double D Bagels for both the quality of their product and the quality of their service.

We requested that they email us a flyer describing their products and they did so immediately.

Address: Cuenca

Contact information: dawnwolfe1113@gmail.com 096 802 2545

Recommended by Walt and Karen Panko:  walt@waltpanko.com

Verónica Alvarez, Chocolate Factory

I am a lover of black chocolate and I think it could be one of the best chocolates I have ever tasted, it melts in my mouth and the quality of the chocolate is gourmet. It is a small shop of an enthusiastic couple who craft it. Definitely tasty.

Address: Av. Machalilla y 31 de Agosto. Puerto López. Provincia de Manabí

Contact information: info@pachachocolates.com 05 230 0323

Recommended by Angel Zurita: 098 202 7351

Dana Cameron, visa facilitator

So, on Tuesday I went to Guayaquil to apply for my residency. The whole thing at the immigration office took all of 15 minutes. 

I cannot praise my visa facilitator, Dana Cameron, highly enough. Her associate, who is also her daughter, met me at the bus station and took me across the street to get my movimiento migratorio. Then we cabbed it over to the Immigration office. We first stopped to get me a passport photo, then hightailed it to across the street to the immigration office. We had no sooner sat down then it was our turn. 

The woman behind the counter flipped through Dana's file of my documents to make sure it was complete: documents, apostilles, translations, and notarizations. Dana arranged for the translations and notarizations. The immigration office took my photo, I paid the office 50 bucks, got my receipt, and then we were out of there. Dana even accompanied me back to the bus station.

There's tremendous value in not going it alone. Dana was on top of everything, thought of everything, took care of everything. I can't praise her enough! Her phone number is listed below. You can also find her on Facebook (www.facebook.com/dana.cam?hc_location=ufi)

Address: 1828 Ryan Court

Contact information:  098 059 0930

Recommended by Dena Jo Kanner:  denajo2@yahoo.com

Area Focal, graphic design

Hello Everyone, I want to recommend Area Focal, a graphic design and advertising company. They help me with advertising for social networks, advertising video and web page for my travel agency.
They are excellent in everything they do; very professional and know how to recommend you the best way and at a lower cost.

They work with photography, advertising videos, web pages, social network management, and are working with some companies in Cuenca such as Containers Park, BTL Shock, Body Care, Alma Paca, Liberi Unsion TV, etc.

Area Focal: Facebook Page
Oscar Bravo, he speaks English.

Address: El Batan y Los Rios

Contact information: info@areafocal.co

Recommended by Andrea Montero:  alma.paca.ecuador@hotmail.com