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“View, View, View!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Arenal Lodge

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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   |  
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Tacoma, Washington
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
“View, View, View!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2012

We visited in March 2011. We did not have reservations and randomly drove up the long driveway to see about pricing, etc. they had a couple of vacancies and we arrived at a reasonable price. We opted for the chalet. I am glad we did. Whether sitting in the comfortable chairs in the morning sipping coffee watching the rising sun hit the volcano or w/ a bottle of wine in the evening as the sun set w/ different lighting or waking in the middle of the night to see the silhouette from bed was magnifcent. Sometimes the top was enshrouded w/ classic rainforest clouds but then the wind would blow in or the sun would evaporate it off and it would suddenly appear in a blink. Very cool, mesmerizing and peaceful to watch (and romantic!).
We didn't mind the drive (but we had a car).. The little town is about 15 minutes away and we did go into town one night (of our 3 nights there) for dinner but decided the food and ambiance was by far superior at the Lodge. We used our car every day to explore and to get to activites and scenic places. Not sure how that might be w/o a car tho--but it doesn't seem like there is any ONE place to be that gets you handily to everything. Driving, btw, was fine in Costa Rica. The breakfast buffet was superior at the Lodge. I can't remmber if it was included in the price. But whatever, the case, it was worth it!
We found the grounds, pool and hottub/jacuzzi to be well-cared for and a good showcase. Altho the lodge/rooms a bit dated, the pricing is fair for what you get. I would skip the horses (unless they have been replaced)--i think they are a bit sad. The nature walk with Miguel was great and walking alone thru the trail is even better a second and third time--if you like walks/easy hikes!.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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455 reviews from our community

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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)
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HOBART
Top Contributor
65 reviews 65 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2012

The tour company must get a heck of a deal sending people here. Yes it is serene because the drive there is a couple of miles of very windy, hilly, bumpy, brick road that is quite a pain to travel in the dark. The rooms were very dark with not enough lighting. It was a good sized room with a beautiful view, but the property is not well maintained. We were unable to close a couple of the windows, because there was no glass on a couple of the slates. On a chilly night we had to drape towels over them to keep the breeze out. There isnt heat or air conditioning, so hopefully the weather will be cooperative for you. If you like camping, this is a step up from that. Activities were good, the horse back riding-okay, the guided jungle walk, very good. Miquel was very knowledgeable The pool is lovely, but not heated. The hot tubs are not turned on unless you call and ask for them to be turned on. The people there are very nice and friendly. The wait staff were all very good and the food was also good. Breakfast on the weekends was buffet style. They do have a lot of wildlife there, a resident macaw, coatimundi, weasels, lots of birds, frogs, snakes. We saw wild pigs on the hillside where the horses were grazing. The best parts of the place is waking to the beautiful view of the volcano (weather permitting) and the excellent staff. The worst parts of the hotel are the disrepair of the buildings and the long windy, bumpy drive in and out of the property to go anywhere else. I would definitely choose a different hotel if I ever went back to this region.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 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.
Columbia, Tennessee
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 21, 2012

From the first time we set foot on this property until we left, we were totally taken with this peaceful beautiful place. Our bedroom was spacious, comfortable and had an amazing view of the Arenal volcano. We loved the windows that were all across the front of our room and we could have easily spent our days sitting on the balcony mesmerized by the beautiful scenery. The entire lodge had a relaxed, friendly feel. For the three days we were there EVERYONE (well there was one who was not so helpful but we don't want her to overshadow the other staff) was so accommodating and would go out of their way to make us feel welcome and a valued guest. We have wonderful memories of this great place and would highly recommend it.

Room Tip: We stayed in a junior suite and it was great. Would select this room again.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Fairway, Kansas
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 19, 2012

Just returned from three nites at this serene mountain top lodge. Wish I was still there. We stayed in a junior suite that overlooked the Arenal volcano. Amazing. Met the owner Theresa, a lovely Brazilian woman. All the amenities were great and for the money was an excellent vacation value. This place is exceptional!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Los Angeles, California
2 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2012

We stayed in a superior room which was very roomy and the balcony had a gorgeous view. Our vacation was during November, so still a bit during off-season. All of the staff was friendly and the travel concierge was very helpful, we were greeted with fresh juice when we arrived. We went on the free horseback ride the hotel offers which was nice, we were told you can usually see monkeys during the ride when the weather is nice but it was raining when we went so we didn't see any. The breakfast (and restaurant) was not extravagant, but pretty good. In general the hotel was clean and comfortable.

If you are looking for a luxe resort, don't stay here, but if you are looking for something more genuinely authentic, this place is perfect. I would not suggest bringing a family here, it seems better for couples. It is nice and secluded, a great place to relax.

Room Tip: Superior room on the second floor have the best view and nice balconies.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Breckenridge, Colorado
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

My husband and I returned last week from a wonderful trip to Costa Rica - Our first hotel was the Arenal Lodge - and it was perfect. This is not a fancy property - all wood, very rustic - up about 3 miles of drive off the main road - but soooo quiet and so comfortable. Our room had a wonderful porch to sit and read and look out at the scenery. We ate each dinner at the hotel and the food was fabulous - also the breakfasts were wonderful - Staff here are very friendly and accommodating. This was a perfect way to immerse ourselves into the Costa Rica Rain Forest.

Room Tip: if you travel off season as we did - see if you can upgrade to Junior Suite - which is what we had a...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

The view of the volcano from our room and dining room was perfect, and the breakfasts were very good. The hotel itself, however, needs a lot of work. Our room had a great balcony with tons of windows, but the room itself was old and the wood walls/floors were decaying. The furniture was dated, the beds were very flat and uncomfortable. The roaches, however, didn't seem to mind. The overhead light in the room didn't work and they couldn't seem to fix it, so our dark room stayed even darker than expected. There is free WiFi, but it only works if you are within 30 feet of the access point. The grounds themselves are beautiful and well kept, and the nature walk is worth doing.

Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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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 
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Also Known As:
Arenal Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Arenal Lodge Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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