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“I dream to come back” 5 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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Chicago, Illinois
1 review
“I dream to come back”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2013

Very peaceful and quite place with outstanding views. Food and drinks are fresh. Services are perfect. Personal is very friendly and helpful. We were in Juniors rooms and rooms were very big and nice with big balcony. We stayed for 3 days and I already dream to come back and stay there for a week at least. We rented a car and were driving around. Coming back at evening and having a good rest was very enjoyable.

Room Tip: Junior rooms
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GutiMau, General Manager at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, October 21, 2013
Thank you much for your review, we are very happy that you enjoyed yourself while staying with us. We feel motivated as we like to know when we do our job right.
Please come back soon so you can experience the Arenal Lodge and its surroundings again!!
Your friends,,
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative 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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English first
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 26, 2013 via mobile

During my recent 8 day stay, this Lodge was the first place we stayed. I enjoyed my time there, the mood, rooms, people were all great. It was also close to many of the excursions we went on. If you want actual rest and relaxation, this is the place for you.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
GutiMau, General Manager at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, September 17, 2013
Dear friend,

We must say that we are very happy for your review, especially for having stayed 8 days.
Like you point out, this a perfect place for rest and relaxation, but also for adventure tours and outdoor activities, since there are beautiful hiking trails in the property as well as a butterfly garden and horsebackriding tours. If you prefer, our tour desk will find you a tailor made tour for and your family, as there are countless options for everyone to enjoy!!!
Thank you again and hope to see you back soon!!

your friends in Arenal!
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NYC
1 review
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2013

We stayed for one night at the Arenal Lodge. Based on the excellent reviews here we were really excited about the place. So we decided to splurge a little and booked the Chalet. In the end we were very disappointed with the place and would not recommend it. The reviews available here leave out a lot of the discomfort and misrepresentations that you need to be prepared for.

As mentioned in many reviews, the location of the property on top of a hill is excellent and provides for awesome views of the volcano. Also, you cannot stay much closer to nature than in this detached location (5 minutes up a steep dirt road). So far so good.

BUT: The hotel facilities are very simple and worn out - in many places you can see a fair amount of wear and tear. This is definitely sub-par, considering the price which aims at a higher class market. For example, the microwave did not work, the fridge was defrosted and in disrepair and moreover you were greeted with a puddle of water when you opened it.

The service was OK but clearly uninformed. For example, nobody told us that we had to let the water run for 15mins to get hot water for the shower. More importantly, we were told - as mentioned in many reviews here - that there would be a free guided tour around the area the next day and also horseback riding available. Further, that a buffet breakfast would be included.

NONE OF THESE THINGS PROVED TO BE TRUE. We adjusted our travel schedule (slept longer) to take advantage of the guided tour and the horseback riding, only to be told the next day that the guide had his day off and that there would be no activities - the opposite of what had been told to us the day before.

Further, there was no buffet breakfast, but only a choice of several types of breakfast. We opted for the american breakfast, which consisted of two fried eggs and a couple of dry slices of toast, accompanied by some almost cold coffee and orange juice. That was it. Barely a "feast" as mentioned in a review here.

All in all, I have stayed at more comfortable and enjoyable places in the Arenal region for a half and even a third of the price. I recommend checking out a different hotel.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GutiMau, General Manager at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, September 11, 2013
Good morning dear friends,

We apologize if you had any incoveniences during your visit, we thank you for taking the time to let us know your comments and suggestions. Your opinion is very important for us and we will definitely use this experience to review our procedures and make changes to improve our operation.
I wish you could have given us the opportunity to talk to me while still at the lodge so that we could have done something while you still were here.
Please feel free to contact me directly should you have any more suggestions, i will be very happy to listen to them.
Sincerely ,

General manager
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Cincinnati, Ohio
Top Contributor
97 reviews 97 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
56 helpful votes 56 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2013

I recently stayed 3 nights at the Arenal Lodge. It is a long drive from the San Jose airport, so be prepared to take at least 3-4 hours to get here. And the steep, bumpy hill to get to the lodge was not very welcome after an already long flight and drive. If you want to do things outside of the hotel each day, just be prepared to drive down and up the hill on the property. However, once we made it to the lodge, we were definitely glad to have picked this place. The property is beautiful and has a great view overlooking the Arenal Volcano. All of the staff members were very friendly and knowledgeable. The main waiter at the restaurant was always there to greet us at breakfast. There were a few breakfast options (Traditional, American, pancakes, or omelets) and all of them were pretty good. We did do dinner one night and they gave large portions of meat, but the cost was a little pricey. There is a lady in the lobby that was very helpful in booking tours and explaining all of the options available. Miguel, was an excellent naturalist and his guided jungle walks and horseback riding was included within the price of our stay. Miguel taught me more than I ever needed to know about ants and poison dart frogs! He also found us again the next morning to show us a red-eyed tree frog. Stephanita, a blue and yellow macaw, made frequent visits to the hotel and even sat with us by the pool while she sharpened her beak with pieces of the rock. We saw a ton of lizards, geckos, walking sticks, frogs, butterflies, wild pigs, and other animals during our stay. It was nice to have a balcony overlooking the backyard and volcano. The rooms were pretty simple. Just beds, a night stand, a small table and chairs, a bench and an overhead ceiling fan. The bathrooms were fine. Our rooms were kind of dark because the rooms are paneled in wood and one of our lamps wasn't working. Be warned, that there are frequent bugs that will likely enter your room as your open the doors and go out on the balcony. Just realize you are in a Costa Rican jungle and get over the fact that you may be living with a few bugs. It will be okay - they won't hurt you. The maintenance staff were not very fast as one of the room fans was broken and it still wasn't fixed within our 3 day stay.

Room Tip: Ask for one that overlooks the volcano and has a balcony. There is usually parking available close t...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GutiMau, General Manager at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, November 13, 2013
Dear friends

Thank you very much for stopping by and leaving your kind comments.
We feel happy that you had a good time while staying at Arenal Lodge. we do our best effort so that people like you can take back home a little piece of this beautiful paradise in their memories.
Our warm regards,

All the staff at Arenal Lodge
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New York City, New York
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2013

The Arenal Lodge was our first stop as part of an 8 day vacation in Costa Rica for 2 families of 5. We stayed in the Chateau's which provided a great view of both the volcano and Arenal lake. After settling in we went to the lodge area and while the kids settled in the adults visited the bar where we were met by a friendly bar tender who provided drinks which we could take with us as we explored the grounds. The facility included an infinity pool and hot tub with spectacular views of the volcano as we saw different types of wildlife meander through the grounds. Dinner at the lodge restaurant was delicious and the service was excellent and our staff included the bar tender who had served us earlier. The next day was our first full day and we started out with the free breakfast available,where we once again received excellent service, provided by many of the same servers who had served us at dinner the evening before. We were picked up at the resort for a trip to go rappelling down cliffs and waterfalls through PureTrek tours, which was also an amazing experience. When we got back to the lodge, we still had time on our hands, so we went to the activities desk which arranged for a guided tour of the hanging bridges of Arenal. It was another bonus as we saw pit vipers, tarantulas, spider monkeys and many other forms of wildlife as we went across bridges hanging through and above the rain forest. Another dinner at the lodge that evening with the beautiful backdrop of the lake and volcano served by our now well known friendly service staff followed by drinks and pool at the bar. We headed out the next morning for our next part of our Costa Rican adventure.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
GutiMau, General Manager at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, November 13, 2013
Hello hello!!

Muchas gracias!! This is thank you very much in spanish, and its our way of saying that we greatly appreciate your visit to Arenal Lodge.
We are located in a priviledged area and are happy to share it with our guests and visitors. Since we are in an area next to a national park and the property is so big, we are a biological corridor for animals to run freely in their environment. Also, from the property, you can access so any different tours and activities that its a great place to be based at while in Arenal area.
Again we thank you very much for your kind comments and letting us know about our job.
Your friends in Arenal
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Bozeman
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2013

We stayed at the Arenal Lodge for 2 nights. We absolutely loved it here. The hotel is simple, but the views of the volcano more than make up for any lack of luxury. The service and hotel staff are great! Especially Henry the waiter, he made our stay wonderful! The hotel even upgraded us to a room with a better view of the volcano free of charge. The food at the restaurant isn't anything special, but it's fine. The pool and hot tubs were wonderful, you do have to request the hot tubs be warmed up about 25 minutes before you use it.

The highlight of our stay here was the complementary jungle tour with Miguel at 830 every morning. It is a mile loop of brick walkway though the jungle. Our guide Miguel was incredibly knowledgable and and excellent tour guide. The walk was about 2 hours long and we saw an incredible variety of wildlife. The butterfly sanctuary is especially nice.

They have a natural pool in addition to the hotel pool, but the dam that holds the water in was broken and it had drained during our visit.

In the morning, the mist mostly covers the volcano, but we were still able to locate some howler monkeys right from the balcony of our room.

The lady who books the tours at the hotel, although she is very nice, slightly misrepresents some information, so I advise that you investigate prices on using the hotel wifi before booking anything through her.

Overall, simple hotel, excellent service and staff. Great value. Beware of the driveway! 2 miles of very steep road!

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
GutiMau, General Manager at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, November 13, 2013
Buenas tardes amigos

It is with great pleasure that we receive your comments about your stay. We are glad that your stay was an excellent experience and that you enjoyed the view.
Our staff is our best asset and we are very proud of them all.
Warm greetings from your friends
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The Villages, Florida
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2013

I was beginning to wonder about our choice of where to stay in the Arenal area going up the long and very bumpy driveway, but when we finally reached the top...WOW! Awesome place, really nice rooms, fantastic meals, bar, etc. Take the guided tour with Miguel, very knowledgeable guide and a beautiful hike. Stephania is a riot, she runs the place!

Room Tip: See if one of the honeymoon suites is available
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  • Stayed July 2013, 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 1
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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