We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Best View Ever” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Arenal Lodge

Best prices for your stay
Enter dates for best prices
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 9 more sites!
Save Saved
You added Arenal Lodge to your Saves list
Arenal Lodge
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   200 meters NW from the Arenal Lake dam | Escazú, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park 1250, Costa Rica   |  
  |  
Hotel website
  |  
  |  
Hotel amenities
Offers & Announcements
Fall Travel Special!
Raleigh, North Carolina
Top Contributor
63 reviews 63 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
“Best View Ever”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 2, 2012

We stayed in the Arenal Lodge for three nights in October. While our first room (#24) had a great view, the decor and room was a little stale. With this said, I think that Costa Rica has a lower standard for hotels when comparing them to the US. Without an extra charge, we were moved to the chalets (#210) on top of Arenal Lodge. Let me tell you, this room had the best view that I've ever seen on one hotel room. Simply beautiful views of the volcano and the lake. Again, the room is dated and could be cleaner, but with a view like that, who cares.
Take note that the 2.5km drive up their "driveway" was long and bumpy. The food was very tasty at the Lodge. The servers were great! The pool and hot tub were a nice treat too. Don't count on the fitness center though. It has seen better days, probably a few years ago.
The hotel itself is so quite and peaceful! Nothing but nature can be heard here. There is a local macaw named Stephanie who stays close to the Arenal Lodge and may even been found sitting outside your door.

Room Tip: Ask for a chalet room
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 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.
Write a Review

455 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    166
    146
    71
    42
    30
See reviews for
137
186
8
7
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (111)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Westchester, NY
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 28, 2012

Upon arrival, there was a cold tropical drink waiting for us- along with breath taking views from our windows and the nicest staff waiting on our every whim. The room itself was beautifully designed and clean. Cozy jazzuzzi and contempo-rustic feel. The horse ride, tour, and excursion were a treat. The hotel is located few miles on top of the mountain- perfect for those who really want to get into the tropical atompsophere. But what a gorgeous view- I can't stress that enough. Yes, it is located 20 minutes away from the town, but who wants to be suffocated by the touring crowds when this gem of a hotel is the perfect picture of tranquillity? For those complaining clouds over the mountain: dont visit the RAINforest and expect no fog. And as for those complainging about the bugs and frogs, let me say there are also monkeys and toucans and parrots....Costa Rica is not for those who cannot appreciate mother nature.

Room Tip: we traveled during September adn got an upgrade.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 26, 2012

Our stay at Arenal Lodge was a bit of a mixed experience. We stayed 3 nights in one of the chalets and the view of the volcano is absolutely stunning – especially in the early mornings! The chalet itself seems rather run down, but the room was clean and the coffee mashine excellent. If there is a world championship in towel origami, the maid at Arenal Lodge will get the first price – we loved the various towel animals that were waiting for us every day!! The main lobby and restaurant also seems rather run down and there was a strong smell of mildew in the restaurant – a real shame as the view from the restaurant was amazing and the staff really nice. The garden is beautiful, but the pool smaller than it looks at the pictures. The Jacuzzis were nice though with superb views to the volcano. Included in the hotel stay was a guided walk in the hotel’s tropical forest and a horse ride on the hotel grounds. Our guide was Miguel – a really nice guy with a great knowledge on all plants and animals and a fantastic ability to spot animals. This could be such an amazing place if the buildings and grounds were cared for a bit more. If you are in Arenal for the view and wildlife experience, then I would recommend spending a night or two in a chalet.

Room Tip: Definitely go for a chalet - preferably top floor if you have the option!
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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.
Brooklyn, New York
1 review
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 24, 2012

The location and grounds of this facility are quite good. My biggest criticism is the upkeep and the aesthetics. The room was not as clean as it could be and the fixtures were very dated. I had no problem with the rustic vibe, what I did not care for was the grunge element almost everywhere I looked. I was slightly uncomfortable laying down at night and using the restroom. The workout area was also grossly lacking, boasting a leaky roof and equipment that was rusty and not completely functional. The staff was quite friendly and accommodating but the place needs a face lift and a thorough cleaning...get out all the cobwebs.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charlotte
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2012

The staff was pleasant and accomodating and the property has a nice view. However, the property lacks warmth, a sense of being inviting, and overall dated. The front desk area/reception area, restaurant, and rooms looked like they are more southwestern that a rich, warm, tropical feeling place that Costa Rica is. It really looked liked a dated Best Western in Arizona or Nevada than the beautiful mts of Costa Rica and was overall dirty looking and upkept. The rooms had a dated, blah, and minimalist look. For being a mountain resort, it had no nice shampoo/condition, soap, or bath robes; just shampoo/condition in a pump on the wall. For being categorized as a mountain resort is an understatement. It looked like the place had been decorated from a tag sale with twenty plus year old furniture. If the current owner doesn't want to put money into the property, SELL IT!!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Elk Grove, CA
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2012

My husband and I just returned from our first visit to Costa Rica. Unfortunately the Arenal Lodge was the first hotel of our vacation package. The property is located in a beautiful area with great views of the volcano. However, the goat trail from the main road to the hotel is a nightmare, especially at night. The staff is cordial and friendly however, the entire property is need of updating. The beds are the hardest I've ever experienced. From what we understood the owner has little interest in making improvements because this is a losing investment for her. One night would have been tolerable but three nights was a test. We were happy to move on.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
austin, TX
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2012

We stayed at the lodge, rather than being "in town".

The grounds are pretty impressive (jungle), with views of Arenal volcano across the lake.

The rooms were just in the "OK" category, and the buildings are in need of some major TLC.

We ate breakfast in the dining room each morning, and it was always a treat, as the dining room has large (and I mean LARGE) picture windows looking out over the grounds. There is a wide variety of colorfull birds that come in for the food placed out for them, and it was always enjoyable to have a nice breakfast (food was pretty good) and watch the birds and critters come in.

The staff was pretty nice.

Overall, I'd stay there, again. However, if you want to be "in the action" (we did not), you might consider staying in La Fortuna.

  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Arenal Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Arenal Lodge

Address: 200 meters NW from the Arenal Lake dam | Escazú, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park 1250, 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 Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#12 Spa Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Arenal Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 46
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Arenal Lodge provides guests with the excitement of staying in an authentic rainforest lodge with breathtaking panoramic views of Costa Rica’s famous Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. Guests will enjoy a casual and relaxed rustic lodge setting with the added value of a complimentary breakfast daily. Located on 2000-acres of beautiful tropical rainforest, the lodge is situated near Arenal Volcano National Park. The lodge is surrounded by rainforest - housing hundreds of exotic birds, small animals and the beautiful tropical flowers and trees of Costa Rica. and is it's own local tourist attraction due to its exclusive location with breathtaking panoramic views of Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. The lodge features a full service restaurant with local and international cuisine, gift shop, three heated outdoor Jacuzzi's, an infinite edge swimming pool, walking trails, a butterfly garden, horseback riding, a game-room and outdoor playground for children, fitness room, sauna, and free wireless high speed internet access.Guest rooms and suites feature cable TV, telephone, coffee maker, clock radio, and all have private baths. Complimentary crib and wheel chair are available on request. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Orbitz, Despegar.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, Priceline, Cheap Tickets, BookIt.com, TripOnline SA, Agoda and Tingo so you can book your Arenal Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Arenal Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Arenal Lodge Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Arenal Lodge, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.