Ulew-Tinimit Spanish School

Ulew-Tinimit Spanish School
4 Calle 15-23 zona 1
(+502) 7763 0516 and (+502)-5538-6645
Rank 83%
Prices 165 USD for 25 hours of one-on-one tuition per week including host family with room and full board
132 USD for 25 hours of one-on-one tuition per week without host family
Study one hour daily more or less: add or subtract about USD per week.
School Size 1 - 40 students
Openings This school currently has openings!
Summary This school was founded in 1992 and has teachers with professional background and are university educated with a wide range of professional fields, such as education, economics, social work, medical and politics. The director Edward González is outstanding and very helpful all the time. The teaching is personalized: one student-one teacher, which allows the pace and the material studied to be tailored to the needs of each student. Additionally, there are community projects which support local environment and development at many different levels and allow the students to interact directly with Guatemalan culture.
This school gives a nice family feeling, there are vivid discussions between teachers and students. Here, you are in good hands.
Located, just 4 blocks from central park!
Total immersion in Quetzaltenango is excellent, if you don´t hang out with other English speaking students!

Escuela de Español Ulew-Tinimit is a small school which tends to fill up during summer, and at the end and beginning of each year. It is recommendable, that you enroll at least two weeks in advance to assure a space in school and a good instructor.
Please, keep in mind that simply requesting classes by e-mail does not guarantee you a space in the school.
You may pay your tuition in US Dollars, Guatemalan Quetzals, US Travelers Checks, or Visa/MasterCard after you arrive. If you pay with a credit card 13% will be added to the regular prices.

With a timely registration, the school can assign you the best teacher from its list. (Contact us for group discounts).
 Photo Gallery of Ulew-Tinimit Spanish School (click here)

Ulew-Tinimit Spanish School - Details

Teachers Teachers with professional background and university educated with a wide range of specialties, such as education, economics, social work and politics; and earn a good salary per week. Most have more than ten years of experience. ...more
Methods The instruction is one on one, which allows the pace and subject matter to be tailored to the needs of each student. The curriculum is similar as in most schools.
To offer complete immersion, classes will not only be held inside. You and your trainer will visit local markets, shops, parks and places near the school, according to your interest. ...more
Materials Library: The school has a library of books and materials both in Spanish and English is constantly expanding. Students, may borrow materials such as textbooks, dictionaries, magazines and novels; however, you are advised to bring your own dictionary for your own convenience. ...more
Special Programs There are various programs and activities that Ulew Tinimit provides, so that students, are fully able to enjoy and expand on their Spanish speaking experience such as education, economics, social work, alternative medicine, law and politics.
You are also welcome to study a Semester abroad. This full immersion program is set up for the long-term students interested in improving their Spanish skills, while at the same time learning the culture of Guatemala. ...more
Location The school is located in Zone 1 of Xela, just 4 blocks from the central park; you will see the sign of the school outside. ...more
Activities Every afternoon there are different activities such as: videos, conferences about social and political aspects with speakers or members of cooperatives, or presentations of social projects, dance lessons, visits to local villages and attractive sites, local food cooking course, visits to allied projects of the school. ...more
Host Families The opportunity to be a member of a traditional Guatemalan family allows students to get a first hand experience of Guatemalan lifestyle. All host families of Ulew-Tinimit practice and correct your Spanish
Student reports about host families are good. ...more
Volunteering Volunteer possibilities: Environment Project, (Environmental Association led by young Mayan people), organic coffee plantation and live with rural families adapting to their life-styles. The school also supports projects in main rural areas like: Organic Agriculture; Organic Agroindustry; Artisans Support; Rural Education; Inter-Institutional; Medical Project and Alternative Centers of Justice. ...more
Airport Pick-Up Service If requested, Ulew Tinimit will send a representative to pick you up at the airport and bring you to the hotel or the bus station. ...more

Students' Feedback

01 / 2017
I have been attending Ulew-Tinimit Spanish School since 2009 a total of four times including January 2017. The director of the program is outstanding and very helpful all the time. I have improved my Spanish dramatically. I would recommend Martha but all the teachers are great, and many have college degrees. The majority have about 10 years of experience teaching Spanish. With the help of the school I found a four and a half month placement at a university here in Quetzaltenango. I have stayed with families during all stays, and all families practice and correct your Spanish. Quetzaltenango is a fun place with many sites to see and places to eat. The school has great activities.
Thank you!
Ari Freund
12 / 2015
I loved my time at the school. My Spanish improved a lot over the four weeks and has held me in good stead during my travels in Latin America so far. There were a good range of activites outside of class, and both teachers I had were very good. My host family were very welcoming, and very nice. Maybe a little more food would have been good!
Ulew-Tinimit Spanish School was always quick to respond my letters.
Earle Hotta
07 / 2007
I also attended Ulew Tinimit Spanish School in Xela. I studied there for one week. My experience at the school was just okay. The school was very small and intimate which I liked a lot, however, I felt that the teaching was not up to par with the school in Antigua. I do agree with most of what I read, when the suggestion was made to study in Xela because there are few tourists and a greater opportunity to hear and speak Spanish. I agree. My impression of Xela as a place to live and study was lukewarm?I found the city unappealing for me although the family that I stayed with was exceptionally nice. It helped that I was able to converse a lot this year after studying a year of Spanish in the U.S. Last year was a disaster as I had no preparation or formal language. With my family, we all ate together and always talked at dinner time. I just didn?t really eat lunch as it was too much food for me. The only sad thing was that the woman had lost her husband recently and it was sometimes depressing to see how she was dealing with this loss. She was still grieving and I found myself sometimes practicing my trade with this family?I am a counsellor. Whenever I have had homestay, I felt that the family really needed me to be there for their economic livelihood more than for the immersion and experience in family living. No complaints, however, I understand. This school offers an activity each day?this was good and added immensely to the enrichment part of the program. We had a Mayan women speak about her efforts to get more women to run for political office, we visited a hot spring, had a cooking class, salsa lessons, etc. I hope that this bit of feedback helps. This website is excellent. Thanks, Earle
Noel & Joe Laramie Alamilla
06 / 2007
Hello, I chose Ulew Tinimit Spanish School in Quetzaltenango, as my school. I am very happy with the results and the teacher I had. I give thumbs up for the school. It was a bit hard to get into one of your top schools, so, Ulew Tinimit was my second choice. I finished my sixth week. The school have a lot of activities that I enjoyed. I think what kept me longer at the school was the strong family atmosphere developed by the Director, Ingrid and her teachers. My first family was a bit ¨intentionally¨ short on food. I reported it to Ingrid, and she took immediate action to relocate me and addressed the situation that I had. I think that a small school like this school was a plus, that set it apart from other big schools that had 30-40 students. It embraces a family culture and friendly atmosphere. Thanks to your website. Peace, Noel.
Arika Virapongse
06 / 2007
I studied in Xela for 4 weeks at Ulew Tinimit Spanish School. It was the first school that I visited and I knew that it was the perfect school for me immediately. I got a really great feeling from Ingrid-- the director-- and the school was very beautiful, well-lit, small, and in a good location. The students I met there were really happy with the school and there were less than 10 students the entire time that I was there; it was a good size for me. I wasn?t really interested in interacting with lots of students. My first teacher did not concentrate enough on the grammar, so the next week I switched to a teacher who was recommended to me. Nancy is a grade-A professional teacher. I needed to learn Spanish so that I could conduct a PhD research project there in the future, so it was really important for me to gain a solid base in Spanish. Nancy was a perfect match for me. I was like a sponge and wanted to learn as quickly and as intensive as possible and she kept up with the pace. By the end of the month I could finally speak and write Spanish fairly comfortably. The homestay was sufficient. It was more like a boarding house than a home stay, but it was comfortable and all of my needs were met. To be honest, after studying 5 hours a day at the school and about 2 hours every day on my own, I didn?t feel like talking that much with the family?so this situation was also fine with me. After this experience I left and travelled around Guatemala to practice my Spanish for 10 days. I really appreciate the service that you offer, and you can be sure that there are many students out there who rely on the information of your website. Best regards, Arika Virapongse. PhD student, School of Natural Resources and Environment, University of Florida.
Matthew Davis
05 / 2007
I went to Ulew Tinimit Spanish School in Xela. I studied there for two weeks. I had a great experience there. My teacher, Nancy, was very good. We had interesting conversations and she explained very clearly aspects of grammar that I could never really understand before. The director Ingrid was wonderful- she was very fun and helpful. The school itself is in a new location. It has a great courtyard that allows in sun and some fresh air. My host family was also wonderful- they were very kind and helpful. They gave me ample opportunity to practice Spanish. The food was very good- thank you Auri! Manuel was a great guide to Xela. All in all, I was very very happy with the school. One thing I would add is that it is a smaller school. If a person wants a school with lots of students and more activities, then this is probably not the school to go to. If a person wants something more relaxed and laid back, then this would be a great place to go. Thanks, Matt.
Michael Kolassa
01 / 2007
We started at Ulew Tinimit Spanish School in Quetzaltenango. We studied there for only 4 days. We arrived in Xela on December 26th, 2006 and had been in touch with the school for almost 2 weeks. The teachers we got at Ulew Tinimit did simply "their jobs" and did not care about our needs. When we demanded a different way of teaching, we were told that the subject we were asking for was for week no.3. Since we had been with Ulew Tinimit only for a few days we didn′t get the full picture of the school, but we think that the variety of the program offered at other school we attended is wider. We stayed with two families; the first family was good in terms of integration, but due to the hygienic situation we decided to change. The second family was good in terms of integration & hygiene but we were not allowed to stay with them after we quit the school; besides, we only ate with the families and used their amenities but stayed (slept) in our motor home overnight. We wouldn′t recommend this school, as it is dark, cold and managed in a poor way, no representative of the school speaks English, meaning that other students are used to translate. Also, the teaching material is more then limited and when we quit we were not asked for the reasons with even 1 word. We like to let you know that we have chosen this school, according to the ranking of your site and that we were more than disappointed when we realized what that school is about and asked ourselves how that school could ever have reached the scores they have. We hope that our comments will be considered within your next review of Spanish schools in Xela. Kind regards Michael & Birgit.
Keith Brown
05 / 2006
We also studied at Escuela de Español Ulew Tinimit in Xela for three weeks. When Keith registered us for school, I did not know what to expect. I worked diligently and very hard to complete the assignments. At the end of the three weeks, I had dramatically improved. The teacher in Xela was superb. I wrote, read, and spoke Spanish with my instructor. She was organized, gave me homework assignments, and tests on Fridays. When I told her I didn′t understand a concept or I did not have vocabulary memorized, she slowed down and took the time for review. I continue to work daily here in the US to maintain what I learned. The school activities in Xela were sometimes a waste of time and other times extremely interesting. Sometimes, we travelled great distances for a twenty minute presentation. I was expecting to see an agricultural project, but it was sampling jam; the fruit was purchased in the markets and cleaned and prepared in a building. This outing was definitely not worth the time or the energy. Other trips were to see chocolate being made, again a long distance trip and samples given. These were of interest, but not something I would want to repeat. I would have preferred that the afternoon activities focused on areas closer to town such as the trips we made for weaving (Textiles) or to visit the museum of traditional Mayan clothing. On May 10th, Dia de las Madres, we went to a home for women; that was fantastic. We arrived at noon and could not stay longer; this was again, a very long way out of the city for a 45 minute visit. Again another challenge with time and distance. This was one of the most cultural activities and one of great meaning for me. We do not celebrate, Dia de las Madres, in the same manner in the US. I was glad we were in the country at that time. My favourite after school outing was a visit to the natural hot spas (Las Cumbres). This was out of the city; however, we were given plenty of time at the spas to enjoy and then headed for home. On the days in which we did not have a field trip in the afternoon, we returned to school at 3 pm for videos of documentaries. They were sad and though provoking, that was well worth the time; another was a Hollywood film which I could have rented in the US. When teachers presented us with activities, I asked two questions: 1. How far is it? 2. How much time do we get to stay and visit? I wanted valued experience for the time. The weekend activities were much better than the afternoon activities. We started early at 8 am and finished at 4:30 p.m. We visited a glass blowing factory, a home in which rugs, scarves, and shawls were made (Momostenango and Parque Los Ricos). We went to the baths in the hot springs (Aguas Amargas), but it rained so much that it was not possible to do any hiking or go to the beach. I also kept a journal of my activities (written in Spanish) for me to share with my instructor on Mondays; this was not required, but something that I found of value for myself, it gave me another opportunity to write in Spanish and to let her know my capabilities. On weekends I was also more relaxed because there were no weekend assignments. According to my instructor, I was one of the few students who completed the assignments. That′s how I learned, I can′t imagine not completing the work. The family in Xela was wonderful; I remain in contact with them at least once a month. We joined them for church, the daughter escorted us to the movies and played games. We took them out to dinner a couple of times. The house was clean, the food was very good, and it was great to have a hot shower every day. One of the first questions the mom asked was a list of foods we did not like. We forgot to mention liver, but the mom offered to make something else right away. She was very accommodating. We ate stews for lunch, dinner was often black beans, fried plaintain and eggs. We did not have eggs for breakfast, instead it was cereal, fresh fruit and toast. We sometimes purchased the fruit to share. When my husband was taken ill a couple of days after our arrival, the family took great interest in his recovery. They provided a thermometer, a bowl of cold water and much compassion. The mom showed me how to use the stove to make him tea if it became necessary. I was very grateful to all of them. It′s scary to be sick in an unfamiliar place. During my husband′s illness, the school also was of great help. I was able to leave the school with my teacher to purchase medicine as soon as the pharmacy opened and the teacher walked with me to the house to ensure I would not get lost. I had only been in the city for two days with little ability to speak the language. I hope to return to the school and the family. My education in Xela has allowed me to attend an Intermediate Spanish class. I never thought that this would have been possible after four weeks in an immersion program. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Amy Bokser
07 / 2005
We went to Escuela de Español Ulew Tinimit in Xela. One week. My teacher, Pablo, was great -- he was patient and well-educated, good at explaining grammar, politics, and where to get a good hot chocolate. My husband′s teacher, Rony, was also great -- a very funny guy, and extremely well-informed for someone so young. How was your family? Our family was very nice. They didn′t have a chance to spend much time with us until the last evening, which made us sad that we couldn′t stay longer. Everyone was friendly and the room was cute and clean. The only problem was that the size of the meals they fed us was very small.
Ayana Wilkes
06 / 2005
I am attending Escuela de Espanol Ulew Tinimit. This is my 6th and final week however, my 7 yr. old son studied for 5 weeks. I had two good teachers.  My son had 3 teachers and the school does NOT have a kids program like I previously thought. The biggest disappointment was my family.  I stayed with them for 2 weeks only because they did not serve enough food.  (For example, a single corn on the cob for dinner). Apparently this has been reported by student before and after me but the school keeps sending people to this woman.
Colleen McGarry
04 / 2005
I enrolled at Ulew-Tinimit, where I studied 3 ½ weeks and enjoyed thoroughly.
Karen Licurse
10 / 2004
Escuela de Espanol Ulew Tinimit Yes, my teacher was wonderful. Very helpful, knowledgeable and fun. My family was great. The room was tiny, a bit loud and a bit cold. But the people were very warm and friendly. It was a great way to really learn about the local colours. Overall, my experience in Guatemala was one of the best in my life. From the minute I walked off the plane, I was exposed to sights and sounds like no other -- from the chicken buses to the markets to Lago Atitlan to tortilla at every meal :)  I was only there for two weeks, but I met incredible people from around the world, shared meals and life experiences with a local family, and improved my Spanish considerably. Xela is a great town - if a bit rainy in September. It′s easy to navigate and has many modern conveniences, yet retains a local feel. And the Ulew Tinimit experience was perfect -- it′s small enough to get to know everyone and really learn, yet large enough to have enough activities and support. I found your site to be very helpful. I enjoyed reading the reviews and they played a bit part in my choice of schools. Thanks for your help.
Sofie De Bauw
03 / 2004
The school was Ulew Tinimit. I′m very happy about the school and about the teacher. It′s a small school, but cosy. They also support local projects and offer voluntary work. I like that aspect, because it isn′t all about the money for them. My family was really nice; I stayed with them for 2 months because I did some voluntary work in Xela.
Catherine Evans
10 / 2003
I studied in Ulew Tinimit for 6 weeks. Teacher - Had two different teachers during my time there (they like to give you the opportunity to change teachers if you study there for a long time in order to gain an appreciation of different teaching methods and also Spanish accents) and both were very good. Family - Again I had two different families during my time there. I changed my first because I wasn′t that happy with some of the conditions, but the second was absolutely superb and made me feel very much at home. Changing your family is very easy to do if you-re not happy with them. Overall I′d really recommend Ulew Tinimit. There is a real community spirit and they place excellent emphasis on providing social and cultural activities to increase your understanding of Guatemalan culture. I enjoyed my time there immensely. Regards
Solmaz Shotorbani
09 / 2002
I studied for 4 weeks at Ulew-Tinimit. I had an amazingly wonderful teacher whom I learned a great deal from--not just Spanish, but also about life. I greatly enjoyed our cultural exchange and hours of laughter. And I loved my school. I also really enjoyed conversing and laughing with all the other teachers and Ingrid, the Director of the Secular de Espanola Ulew-Tinimit. The cultural exposure and interactions with various community members was very beneficial to my education and introduction to Guatemala. How was your family? Not a good match.
Peter Headlam
05 / 2002
Thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Ulew Tinimit was good. Good teachers. Family nice but accommodation too small for a couple. Suffered badly from stomach problems, which reoccurred. Believe it would have been better for us to do the school in Antigua. Regards