Settled by Spanish fleeing the pirate attacks on Nueva Segovia and Ocotal, Estelí was once one of the prettiest mountain villages in Nicaragua. The populations staunch opposition to Somoza family rule in the 20th century meant it was a site of constant rebellion from 1978-79 and suffered heavy damage in that time period. Today’s ad-hoc version of Estelí will not win any architectural awards, but the city remains a vibrant commercial center that does not forget its revolutionary roots. What dominates the economy today is cigar production, with numerous Estelí cigar factories pumping out millions of Cuban seed Nicaraguan cigars that are often rated in the top 5 world-wide. The combination of the cigar business and the fertile NGO grounds of Estelí mean hotels are often full. Fortunately there are two good options for hotels in Estelí, each with its own strengths which are outlined below.
Just off central park, NGO favorite, simple, neat rooms with private bath, hot water, cable TV, restaurant
Modern, multi-story hotel outside town, nice rooms and service, modern design + comfort, new 2013