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“Highly Recommended” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Springs Resort and Spa

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The Springs Resort and Spa
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Near Montana de Fuego, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park, Costa Rica   |  
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Hotel amenities
New York, NY
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Highly Recommended”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2009

The Springs was beautiful and friendly and had great service. Don't follow the crowds to Tabacon - the Springs is better! Joey the manager is great and so is Alan (or Allen, not sure which spelling), who gives tours. One caveat - the massages were only so-so.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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Boca Raton Florida
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 5, 2009

My husband I spent a week in Costa Rica, 2 nights of which were spent in the Volcano Arenal area. We were tipped off to try The Springs by a business owner we met on the way to the area. This is a new Resort, just a year old. It is stunning. The craftmanship and attention to all details are apparent everywhere. Staff were wonderful, the tours (canoping, canyoning and ATV) that we booked through the hotel were top notch.

Our room was roomy, beautiful, with a tremendous view of the Volcano and a large balcony. The bathroom was huge with a super tub, perfect for two!

The hotel was running an off season special where we received 2 spa treatments with a 2 night stay. The spa is as lovely as the rest of the resort, which appears huge. The website doesn't do it justice.

We ate at 3 of the restaurants in the hotel, all were good. We really didn't want to leave, and highly recommend this resort as the perfect place for romance and adventure. The hot springs pools that seems to be all over the property were lovely as well...much to do, spend more than a few nights!! We will be back!!

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Naples, FL
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2009

My husband and I stayed at The Springs in September. The pictures on the hotel's website do not do it justice. It is a 5 star resort all the way. The rooms are beautiful and comparable to rooms found at most Ritz Carlton or Four Season hotels. The view from the bed is directly on the volcano, while a lcd tv hangs unobstructively above the picture window. The hot springs offer the ultimate in relaxation and are great after a day of activities. It is a long bumpy road to the hotel from the main road but most tour operators will pick up for a small additional fee ($15 each way), and that alone should not deter you from staying here.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Minneapolis, MN
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2009

The location is good and bad. It has a breathtaking view of the Volcano (fifth time to Arenal, first time actually seeing it.) We chose the less expensive Vista room, I can not imagine that the Alta Vista rooms have a better view.

The choice of hot springs was very impressive. Since it is low season, the hotel was pretty empty. So Los Perdidos (the lost springs) was very romantic and secluded. The Laguna swim up bar is the best place to meet and chat with fellow travellers.

The rooms were nicely decorated and the bed was extremely comfortable. It was positioned you could lie in bed and look at the mountain through the picture window and still watch the flat screen positioned over it.

And there is time to watch tv. The resort pretty much rolls up by 10pm. But that gave us a chance to try out the beautiful, hand tiled, jaquizzi. My husband is 6'3, and he was able to stretch out fully in the tub. He loved it.

If at all possible, take advantage of the promotional price they are offering now. The promotion includes 2 free massages. So at the discounted rate, with the spa credit, The Springs is an amazing value as well as an amazing resort.

The one problem is that they haven't finished paving the road yet. It is 3.5 km of authentic Costa Rican driving. I recommend 4WD and a sports bra. But it is all good, we never wanted to leave anyway.

  • Stayed September 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Connecticut
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2009

This hotel is great, the rooms were absolutely breathtaking and I have never in my life had such a view! (definitely request the second level hotel rooms!)
All of the staff were incredibly nice, and everything was extremely clean.
My only complaint or suggestion, is that the food here is not that great... I didn't expect it to be amazing food... but I will say that it is definitely expensive for what it is (and so are the alcoholic drinks)... I am so glad that we were able to experience this resort, but I think it could be a world class place if they would increase the quality of the food. (I also highly recommend the waterfall repelling and ziplining booked through the hotel, it was an absolute blast!!!)

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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West Palm Beach
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2009

Before even starting to describe the resort, the drive to reach it is an adventure in itself. After winding through several kilometers of rocky inclines to reach the resort, the Springs sits about 600 meters above a valley and 6 KM East of the Arenal Volcano. The views are nothing short of spectacular. Every obe of the five levels of the resort has multiple viewing decks and terraces to enjoy the natural wonder of the Volcano and rainforest below.

The architecture is fantasy-like almost as if out of a movie. The pool and hot springs areas are breathtakingly beautiful, and each one has a different temperature that suits you're preference. The rooms also have perfect views of the Volcano and valley, with ample chances for bird watching right from the balcony. The staff actually nail bananas to trees below the guest rooms to attract insects and birds to bring the rainforest right to your room. The spend hours watching the volcano from chairs, hammocks, or inside the room if it gets too humid outside.

Service was 1st rate from everyone at the resort from the wait staff, the spa, hotel managers, and most of all Alan, the Springs' tour guide. Alan was incredibly knowledgable about everything from the fauna and animals down in the property's wildlife reserve to the volcano's history and perfect viewing areas. Everyone did their best to make us feel like valued guests. We especially appreciate the nightime staff that switched rooms for us after discovering a few insects in our room...no questions asked!

The evening lava tour down to the Arenal National Park to watch the volcano errupt is not to be missed. Watching the volcano errupt is one of the most awe inspiring things you will ever experience. Alan runs a tour at 6:30 in the evening that takes about as close to the base of the volcano as you can get. The viewing distance is just under 1 KM and you can see and hear pyroclastic flows slide down glowing red against the dark night sky.

There isn't much to critique at the Springs as they've thought of just about everything. The restaurants offer a nice blend of traditional Costa Rican staples, as well as more familiar fare to non-locals. The buffet breakfasts are excellent, with fresh fruits and some of the freshest mango I've ever had. After three days at the Springs with my wife, I look forward to planning a return trip here with the kids.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, Canada
Top Contributor
106 reviews 106 reviews
87 hotel reviews
Reviews in 56 cities Reviews in 56 cities
830 helpful votes 830 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 1, 2009

We stayed at The Springs for two nights during our three week vacation in Costa Rica. When I initially made our (non-refundable) reservations, I thought that Arenal and La Fortuna were two different areas. We had a good laugh once we found out that after staying at the Hotel Royal Corin in La Fortuna for three nights we were heading just 20 minutes down the road to The Springs for our next stay!

We reserved our room directly with the hotel, which required us to fax back a confirmation form including all credit card information. Every other hotel we booked in Costa Rica required payment in full in advance, so I assumed that was the case with The Springs. I was surprised when we checked out to discover that the room had not been paid in advance, so just be aware of that before you go.

I was glad we had not chosen to rent a car during our trip as the road up to The Springs is indeed as bad as everyone says. Plus, the hotel's remote location really makes little day trips prohibitive. It's best to plan to stay on the property for the duration of your stay unless you sign up for one of the organized excursions.

The resort certainly makes an initial "WOW" impression. The grounds are lush, everything is pristine and new, and the view of the volcano is jaw-dropping. After spending three nights in La Fortuna with no volcano view (it was always hidden behind a veil of clouds) we were thrilled to be able to see the whole thing from The Springs! The front desk staff is very professional and friendly, and many of them speak excellent English.

We booked a Vista guest room that included two free 50 minute massages for the rate of $259 per night. Had we stayed a few days earlier, the high season price would have been $389 per night-- very steep for a hotel that does not include breakfast or offer turndown service. That being said, the room was very well appointed and decorated with tropical Costa Rican flair. We loved the copious use of natural woods, wicker, rattan and stone. The lighting is soft and moody, and the bathroom is large and luxurious. There's a separate water closet, large walk in shower, and generous sized jetted tub. The product line is by ProTerra, a mass-market hotel supplier, which is not in the same league as those offered by other Costa Rican hotels we stayed at, like L'Occitane or Aveda, for example. On the plus side, the room had the best mini-bar setup we've ever seen! There were several full-sized bottles of wine (reasonably priced too), lots of sodas, liquors, snacks, a refrigerator, a sink and all the accoutrements one might need. There is also a full room service menu and a complimentary DVD menu (mainly movies from the 80's and 90's).

Our room (109) seemed to have a dead-centre view of Arenal, but I think all of the rooms probably have excellent views. Not only can you enjoy the views from bed through the large picture window, you can relax on a generous sized patio with rocking chairs, a dinette set and even two hammocks! The ground floor rooms have a more tropical view (which we liked) but the second floor rooms have higher ceilings and totally private balconies (there's a gravel path in front of the ground floor rooms that workers walk along occasionally).

The grounds are large, well-manicured and spread out. It is true, however, that the architecture, the springs and the pools do have an artificial quality once you look at them closely. There's lots of fibreglass, concrete and plastic posing as rocks, stone and wood. All of the hot springs pools are attractive but man-made, and much to our surprise there were frequent arrivals of day-trippers on a $20 day pass (including transportation from less expensive area hotels) who would clog the springs (one of which features a waterslide), the pools and the bars/restaurants. Many of these people went into the pools FULLY DRESSED! It was very bizarre... Daytrippers are allowed onto the property from 10AM to 8PM, so there are very few hours left in the day when registered guests can have *their* resort to themselves (guests have to wear blue rubber wristbands to distinguish them from the paper-wristband-wearing day trippers). This alone would prevent us from booking here again.

We were also surprised that such an expensive, isolated resort would attract so many families. We really did feel like we were at "Disney's Volcano Lodge" during our stay. On our first night we tried to eat at Las Ventanas, which is supposed to be their gourmet restaurant, but when we arrived (8PM) the restaurant was empty except for a table of 12, 5 of whom were noisy children dressed for a day at the beach rather than an elegant dinner. We left after 5 minutes (with apologies from the maitre'd) and were surprised to discover that exactly the same menu is offered outside on the terrace. Strange... The meal was good, but not great.

Breakfast the next morning at $10 per person for a large buffet represented good value with lots of choices. However, again we were disappointed to have to hear crying children and see barefoot teens shuffling back and forth to the buffet. Ugh.

Lunch at the sushi bar was terrific! We enjoyed the maki boat for two- very fresh, well-prepared, and not too-expensive.

We didn't take any excursions from the resort, but one morning we did take advantage of an offer of a private, guided tour of the hotel's animal reserve. The guide was so informative and engaging, and he spoke excellent English. On our second afternoon we used our spa credits: I had a very good Swedish massage and my partner had a facial and a manicure. The facilities are beautiful, spacious and very well-maintained. There's also an excellent fitness facility (two separate rooms- one with 5 cardio machines and the other with lots of weights) that offers complimentary water, fruit and nuts. The only thing missing is some sort of sound system or televisions.

We spent just over a thousand dollars for our two nights, and in retrospect are not sure that it was great value for the cost. The vistas are certainly spectacular and the accommodations are beautiful, but for us, the clientele, the presence of daytrippers, and the forthcoming casino (can you imagine?!?!) just cheapen what should be a sophisticated, romantic retreat. Families clearly enjoy this resort. Well-traveled couples can do better.

  • Stayed August 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Springs Resort and Spa

Address: Near Montana de Fuego, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Business Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#2 Luxury Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#4 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#6 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Springs Resort and Spa 4.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A world class luxury resort featuring spectacular Hot Springs, picture perfect views of the Arenal Volcano from every guest room and four restaurants including our famous Ginger Sushi Bar and Las Ventanas fine dining. Enjoy our 18 mineral-laden, artesian hot springs and our 14,000 square foot Spa and Fitness Center. On our exclusive 165 acre rain forest and riverfront property we offer horseback riding, river activities, ATV and hiking tours. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Springs Resort And Spa At Arenal Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
The Springs Hotel
The Springs Resort And Spa Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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