Testimonials can be very illuminating; comforting and informing us as to what to expect from our travel destination.
We are happy to share some of the testimonials we have collected over the years. At Villa Sumaya, we listen to our guests' feedback, taking an active interest in improving our facilities, food service, ambiance and hospitality. We hope that these testimonials from fellow travelers will bring clarity and inspiration to your decision to visit us. Check out our Trip Advisor for more comments.
"I have never felt the power of Nature and Her healing qualities as much as I did when teaching and practicing at Villa Sumaya. The land is sacred and magically healing. The staff is amazingly helpful, meeting every need with a positive attitude. We loved the food, the rooms, and all the services that were provided. I will certainly be returning to teach and grow in this wonderful environment! Thank you for being so unique and special!" – Jeanne Heileman, Yoga Instructor in Los Angeles, California
"Every winter since 2006, Villa Sumaya has enfolded our groups of creative writers & yoginis in her beautiful arms. She has made sure we ate the most nourishing and delicious food, slept in divinely comfortable beds in rooms designed to delight the eye and soothe the body, and practice our crafts of writing and yoga in the most heavenly possible spaces. If this makes Villa Sumaya sound like the Queen Mother of Paradise, it’s perfectly true–thanks to the artistry and wisdom of founder, Wendy Stauffer, the sure guidance of manager, Lizzy Gerson, and the dedicated, enormously hardworking cooks, housekeepers, gardeners, front desk and maintenance staff. Gracias y amor a todos por todo!" - Patricia Lee Lewis
"For both of us, the week at Villa Sumaya was a transformational experience, and I don’t often use that term. It wasn’t any one thing, but everything that came together for Rhonda & myself…the setting, for sure, the food (compliments to your kitchen!), meeting you…Danielle and her inspired leadership of our group and our yoga sessions…and the Shamanic healing ceremony, which touched a very deep chord in me. Altogether, it was quite magical." - Eric
I have been taking my groups to Villa Sumaya for the past several years and I cannot think of a better place in the world to take my groups. The beauty and color, the folklore of what Guatemala has to offer is one of the best in the world. Villa Sumaya is a retreat nested in a paradise created by Wendy the beautiful owner and all of the people that help maintain the balance between nature and spirit. The Villa looks into Lake Atitlan with majestic views of the volcanos, the lake is considered to be one of the most beautiful in the world, and it is! The nickname for this lake is “the mirror of the Gods.” To me, it is not only that but also “the playground of the Gods." You will be able to witness some of the most spectacular sunsets your eyes have ever seen. The internal growth that will take place at Villa Sumaya is worth the journey there. You will not regret it. Om Shanti." - Ernesto Ortiz
"I stayed at Villa Sumaya almost two years ago and I just wanted to tell you how much it still lingers in my mind. As an avid traveler, I often don’t feel the desire to return to places once I’ve visited them but I think of Villa Sumaya often and fondly, as if looking forward to the day I will be there once again. I’ve had so many reminders this week of my time there – from glimpsing a night sky crowded with beautiful stars to hearing from people I met at Villa Sumaya but had not heard from since – that it compelled me to write to you simply to tell you that it still touches my heart two years later. Upon reflection I see that my time at Villa Sumaya was really a turning point in my life – like I stepped through into another stage of my journey. I’ve recently moved from Australia to the south of France and I’m so happy to say that I haven’t looked back for a moment. But I think that whole journey really began at Villa Sumaya, so thank you for creating such a wonderful space and for inspiring me to live the best life I can." – Micky
"The most wonderful, relaxing environment that restores your peace and helps you appreciate life. You’ll meet wonderful people and achieve a sense of calm not possible anywhere else." -Claudia
“My time at Villa Sumaya was the highlight of my trip to Guatemala. Although it was not my first time traveling alone, I never have felt more welcomed by staff and guests. When I feel my patience fading during times of stress, now I close my eyes, picture Villa Sumaya, and remember all that I learned while I was there.” -Angela Wisely
"I brought a group of my yoga students from our home in Chico, California to Villa Sumaya. Without exception, everyone loved everything about it. The welcoming environment created by the staff, the excellent food, the accommodations, the yoga facilities, the Maya, and the incredible surroundings made our experience one none of us will ever forget. We are coming back next year." -Rex Stromness
“Villa Sumaya was an awesome experience. I have a traveling spirit, and this retreat location had a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere. At Villa Sumaya, you can make your retreat exactly what you want, you just get the added benefit of great people, great yoga, great food, and great scenery! It’s a place for beginners and experienced alike. This was my first yoga trip! Whether on a personal journey, a spiritual journey, or a journey with a group, you will leave with some peace of mind and great set of new friends if your heart is open to it!” -Kelly Berrall
"Villa Sumaya is one of those few places that you can go and finally let go of trying to get more of what you don’t need. It is in this oasis of calm that I find I can use all the surrendered energy to make a difference with what I do have and with what I am. I find that there is a moment when I can just get a glimpse of Lake Atitlan that I start to get really excited, joyful, like a little kid! The whole time there is an experience that you’ll never forget or regret." -Karen Keresturi
“The experience more than exceeded my expectations. The personal attention from the instructors was outstanding and way beyond exemplary. The spa healers were absolutely wonderful. The food and ambiance delicious. I truly felt I had discovered Shangri-la!" -Margie, University Administrative Coordinator, Toronto, Canada
"I have led retreats at Villa Sumaya for five years. When I am there my body is relaxed, my heart is open, and my spirit is connected with its source. For myself and the participants, each visit is a transformative experience. The beauty of the setting, the warmth of the staff, and the energies of the lake, the volcanoes and the Mayan culture combine to make Villa Sumaya one of the most magical places I know." - Laura Hansen – Art & Soul Studio
"Experiencing the ancient healing power of the Land of Guatemala and Lake Atitlan, within the loving container of Villa Sumaya was transformative. Wendy has such a refined taste and created beauty all around for us to enjoy. Comfortable space to rest and to feel the spirit while nurturing the senses. Wonderful services, staff and treatments. A gem to add in the heart of your spiritual journeys." - Nubia Teixeira and Jai Uttal
“Villa Sumaya is both a sensual delight and a place for real work; a supportive environment where your inner work is held in a space of incomparable natural beauty. Remarkable!” -Dave Adair
“This is now my second time visiting Villa Sumaya in one year. Many thanks for always making me feel at home. This is my Guatemalan home and I am filled with love and gratitude for all the love and care each and every one of the Villa Sumaya family takes to make me feel that way! I’ll see you soon!" – Laurie Searle
"Villa Sumaya is magical. They have managed to capture the beauty of the lake and surroundings in their gardens and architecture providing you a wonderful space to relax and recharge. The food is yummy and the staff are sweet and supportive going out of their way to make your stay amazing. The rooms are comfortable and feel like home. The yoga room has a panoramic view of the lake and volcanoes that is breathtaking. I would highly recommend visiting Villa Sumaya; it is truly a special place to experience." – Akasha Ellis
"My wife and I have been coming to Villa Sumaya with yoga groups for the past four years and find it to be a magical place. It provides a quiet and deeply restful environment with panoramic views of three volcanoes on the far side of the lake. The place has a wonderful aesthetic.The grounds have been thoughtfully landscaped with flowers, rock paths and cascading waterfalls. The staff is warm and attentive. The food is fabulous. Each room has a stunning view of the lake and volcanoes. The yoga/meditation temple is world class with full panoramic views, a vaulted thatched ceiling and a glass pyramid skylight. The quiet village of Santa Cruz is a 20 minute walk. The only access to Villa Sumay and the town is by boat and this preserved the beauty and tranquility of the area." – Surya Chandra Das
"This was a purely magical week. The space here is truly mystical and utterly beautiful. I had an absolutely exquisite time. I want to take this opportunity to RAVE about the staff – EVERYONE so kind, so friendly, good souls, really good-hearted people who made me feel at home."