The Zopilote is an ecohostel located at a height on the slope of a volcano on the Ometepe island. It is possible to sleep in a hammock, bed or individual room. Comfort is basic but respectful of nature, places to sleep are disseminated across the property on the slope and along small trails opened in a luxurious vegetation which is composed of edible and ornamental plants. There is as well a vegetarian restaurant which is also the hostel bar place on a wooden platform above a small cultivated garden as well as the phyto-filtering system, it is a nice and central place for the customers who gather there for meals.
Our dormitory was a huge rood planted on solid polls and a cement base. Completely open, it gave the impression to sleep outside, very nicely, under a mosquitoe net. The individual rooms are little chalets with more or less original architectures scattered across the property. There is a space foryoga session, a huge cement platform well tucked away. There is also a place with wooden tables and a huge oven which is active on pizza nights.
WATER AND ENERGY MANAGEMENT
Water comes from the volcano sources. Water used by the kitchen is treated by phyto-purification in various cement trays that go down to the garden. The energy is mainly solar and its usage limited. For example our dormitory was equipped with a battery and its own solar panel and the restaurant has its own tower with its panels to feed it.
The issue with non-organic waste is the same everywhere in this region. For human waste, the toilets are composting toilets. They are with two toilets each in order to always keep one closed for composting and the other one active.
THE WAY IT WORKS
The restaurant, the cooking and the work in the garden are handled by locals. There is also a yoga teacher and normally someone responsible for the volunteers and the organization of their work. The volunteers work mainly at the shop at the Zopilote entrance below to welcome the customers and organize the sale of the products done onsite. There is a volunteer for the garden who is mainly in charge of collecting the leaves necessary to make the restaurant salads. There are regularly theme evening or activities organized for the customers and by the volunteers and the local personal.
Local food production seems low, a few plants and some fruit trees. There is a production of fresh bread but not from farm products. Otherwise a number of local products are sold on the farm such as various essential oils.