Buena Vista, Guatemala

Casa del Rio Lodge

Buena Vista, Guatemala

Casa del Rio Lodge

What we like

Known to harbor incredible numbers of Pacific sailfish, as well as marlin, tuna and dorado, Guatemala is a definite must on the bucket list of every serious saltwater fly angler. And Casa del Rio Lodge makes it easy to tap into the area’s world-class fishery and experience the incomparable offshore action without giving up any desired comforts and amenities on the water or on land.     

Owned and run by Ricardo de León, one of Guatemala’s most accomplished billfish captains (part of the crew that set the single-day record for most releases of sailfish caught on fly, with 57), Casa del Rio Lodge offers precisely what big-game anglers expect from a premier fishing operation, spacious, clean and all-inclusive accommodations, good food and drink, and excellent, personal service. 

The lodge is gated for privacy and security, it boasts peaceful and inviting dining and gathering areas to hang out and trade fish tales with fellow anglers, and is conveniently located a short distance from the marina where the area’s entire sportfishing fleet docks. And Casa del Rio’s boats are comfortable, well-maintained, equipped with top quality gear, and operated by expert crews, with two mates always on hand to work the teasers and aid fly anglers in their quest to catch the fish of a lifetime.


Year Round


Black Marlin, Blue Marlin, Dorado, Pacific Sailfish, Striped Marlin, Yellowfin Tuna


Casa del Rio offers six double-occupancy rooms and one triple, all of them spacious, nicely furnished and air-conditioned, and with private bath. The surrounding grounds are expansive, accented with tropical foliage, and feature a large swimming pool, a tiki bar and an ample, shaded, outdoor-dining area, both ideal for enjoying cold beer or cocktails, tasty appetizers and any of the scrumptious dishes served for supper.


15 Guests

Request More Info


Lodge Features & Amenities

Amazing Food

Beginner Friendly

Couples Friendly

Family Friendly

High Value

Non-Angler Friendly

Rental Equipment


The Casa del Rio Lodge Experience

Located in Buena Vista, immediately adjacent to the development of Iztapa, Casa del Rio is an all-inclusive lodge with private, expansive outdoor areas, which include, a well-stocked tiki bar, a spacious dining area with plenty of covered seating, and a swimming pool to cool off upon returning from your action-filled day offshore. Both the food and the service at the lodge are great, and the air-conditioned accommodations are clean, roomy, quiet and very comfortable.

The unparalleled numbers of Pacific sailfish prowling Guatemalan waters on any given day is what earned this place its reputation, but sails are not the only game in town. In fact, marlin (blues, blacks and stripes) are always a possibility, especially from April through December, with some giant blues showing up during late summer. Dorado also abound, particularly from June to October. And yellowfin tuna frequently make the scene between August and the end of the year. 

Yes, there’s great fishing year-round in Guatemala, but October through June is generally considered the peak period primarily because the rainy season here extends from mid-July through September. In spite of the random showers, however, the fish are still present and on the hunt, and experience, local captains can usually maneuver around any meaningful precipitation while producing plenty of action for their anglers.

By the way, in Guatemala, it’s possible to raise your game and go from novice angler to experienced in just a few days. The staggering number of daily shots, combined with hands-on tips from our seasoned crews, will enable you to quickly hone your big-game fly-fishing skills.


Fishing Schedule

After breakfast, a little before 7:00 am, anglers are driven to Marina Pez Vela (a 10-minute ride) to board their boat. Upon their return from fishing, at around 4:30 pm, the driver will be waiting to promptly take them back to the lodge.



Casa del Rio Lodge has two of Guatemala’s most coveted sportfishing boats, both modern, well-maintained and rigged specifically to catch large, offshore predators. 

Fishy Business: With nearly 15 feet of beam and a significant bow flair and sharp-angle entry, this 36-foot Jersey Cape is a truly stable fishing platform and cruises in comfort even in a chop. The boat is propelled by a pair of powerful 450 Caterpillar diesel engines, and skippered by Capt. Ricardo De León, one of the most experienced billfish captains in Guatemala, with more than three decades fishing his home waters. Among the early hires at Tim Choate’s “Fins and Feathers” (the big-game operation that first made the angling world take notice of Guatemala’s incredible potential in the early 90s), Ricardo was instrumental in helping several of today’s famous captains learn to fish Guatemalan waters.   

Makina: Casa del Rio’s other 36-footer is an equally adept and comfortable Out Island. This very seaworthy, Carolina-style game boat features an ample cockpit with lots of fishing room, and is powered by twin 450 Cummins diesels. It’s in the capable hands of Capt. Luis “Wicho” Ramirez, a veteran of countless billfish battles in Guatemalan waters, as well as some of the world’s other prolific big-game, destinations, including Panama, the Galapagos, Canary Islands and many more. 

For larger groups, Casa del Rio also uses other comparable local boats with stellar track records of producing great results for visiting anglers. 


Loaner Gear

Casa del Rio boats carry a selection of flies and fly outfits rigged specifically for offshore big-game. Nevertheless, visiting anglers are always welcome to bring their own gear and let the expert local crews help with proper rigging.

Casa del Rio is a gated lodge located in Buena Vista, next to Iztapa. It offers six double rooms and one triple, all of them spacious and well-appointed, with air conditioning and private bath, and just steps away from a large swimming pool and a sizable tiki bar and covered, outdoor-dining area. The Wi-Fi is good and reliable, the food is delicious, and there’s never a shortage of cold beer or other adult beverages.


Guests start their day at Casa del Rio with a cup or two of great local coffee (or tea), fruit juice and a nourishing breakfast that includes tropical fruit, eggs, bacon or sausage, toast and miscellaneous sides (refried beans and fried plantains are regional staples). Lunches are prepared right on the boat and served hot, sometimes featuring a freshly-caught tuna or dorado (mahi). A chilled cocktail awaits anglers returning from their action-packed day offshore, with delicious hors d’oeuvres following shortly after. Dinners are substantial and feature local meats and poultry, as well as fresh seafood and vegetables, in a range of international and Guatemalan dishes often influenced by Mexican or Caribbean cuisine.

When informed ahead of your arrival to Casa del Rio, the lodge staff can easily accommodate most dietary restrictions or special needs. The bar is stocked with a good selection of beers, wines, rum and other spirits. If you are partial to a particular type or brand, however, you may want to request it before your trip or simply stop to pick some up on the way to the lodge. 


Some cell providers have service that works in parts of Guatemala. Plus, Casa del Rio has a phone and also offers free Wi-Fi, with boosters set up to ensure fast, stable internet service all around the lodge.

While Casa del Rio is primarily a fishing lodge, it can arrange some sightseeing tours, as well as a day trip to Antigua, Guatemala’s original capital city, renowned for its coffee, artisanal arts and crafts, great views of nearby volcanoes, and colonial Spanish architecture dating back to the 1600s.

Several airlines offer direct flights to Guatemala City, the nation’s capital, from Miami (2 hours), Houston (2 ½ hours), Dallas and Atlanta (3 ½ hours) and Los Angeles (6 hours). After clearing Guatemalan customs, you will be met by a representative of Casa del Rio and driven directly to the lodge in Buena Vista, a 90-minute drive from Guatemala City’s international airport—on a modern highway leading from the mountains to the coast.

Iztapa and adjacent Buena Vista, where Casa del Rio is situated, are part of a mostly agricultural and commercial-port area. Marina Pez Vela in nearby Puerto San Jose, where the boats are docked, is only 10 minutes away from the lodge. Although you’ll see a number of small businesses and food kiosks frequented by locals along the road to the port and the marina, there are no tourist shops or eateries in this area. To facilitate early flight departures at the end of the trip, some guests choose to spend their last night at a first-class hotel in Guatemala City, closer to the airport.

Midcurrent’s services are completely free. Clients will not pay more than if booked directly with a lodge. All rates are per person based on double occupancy, and listed in U.S. dollars.

2023 Rates

36-foot Sportfishing Boat (Fishy Business or Makina)
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing/group of 3:   $3,440 per person. (Addit’l Night and Day Fishing $1,036)
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing/group of 2:   $4,483 per person. (Addit’l Night and Day Fishing $1,384)
4 Nights / 3 Days Fishing/single angler:  $8,965 per person. (Addit’l Night and Day Fishing $2,768)


  • The number of nights lodging specified in the package (double-occupancy)
  • All meals and complimentary beverages at the lodge
  • Airport ground transfers
  • Fishing aboard selected boat with captain and two mates (deck hands)
  • Full complement of gear and flies (if needed)
  • Lunches, snacks and complimentary beverages aboard the boat
  • Marina ground transfers

Not Included:

  • Airfare to Guatemala City, Guatemala
  • Gratuities for fishing guides and lodge staff
  • Side tours and non-angling activities
  • Alcoholic drinks
  • Guatemalan room tax

Bookings are confirmed with a 50 percent deposit, made no later than seven days after booking a trip. Balance must be received no later than 90 days prior to the first day of the trip. Notification of cancellation must be received 90 days prior to the first day of the trip in order to receive partial or full credit for an alternate date. All payments are final and nonrefundable, with the exception of a medical or family emergency, deemed reasonable at Midcurrent’s discretion.

Booking a trip or making a deposit represents that the client accepts all terms and conditions. Midcurrent’s terms are in addition to any terms and conditions of each individual lodge that Midcurrent represents. Please read those terms carefully—lodge terms, which may differ from Midcurrent’s terms, supersede any agreements between Midcurrent and a client.

Get in touch today to start planning your next fly fishing adventure!

You’ve got fly-fishing travel in your blood. We make high-adventure happen.