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“Perfect place with perfect view” 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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Tampa, FL
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
“Perfect place with perfect view”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2014

Once we got to the top of the mountain where Arenal Lodge is located, we thought we'd never want to leave again. Not just because the road is bumpy, but because the sense of peace surrounds you once you arrive. We had a junior suite that overlooked Arenal Volcano which we learned we lucked out on as we saw its majestic beauty daily. Breakfast was quite good, and we had very nice dinners three nights. The grounds to this place are astonishing. On Thursday's a guide takes guests for a nature hike/tour. There is a trail that you can follow through a butterfly garden and a stone path leading down to stream. There are stone sitting/eating structures around the property. The lodge is located west of La Fortuna and is close to lots of nature places to explore. We thoroughly enjoyed our stay and will go back again.

Room Tip: There didn't seem to be a poor location on the entire property.
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
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468 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 (113)
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vestal, ny
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2014 via mobile

Beautiful setting, nice lobby area, but the family suite is worn, shabby, and not well-cleaned. That would have been manageable if not for the fact that the water tank outside our room broke during the night and not only was the staff scarily shining flashlights around our room, noisily trying to fix the problem, but we were left with no running water, and were told they had no other rooms available, did not offer to find us someplace else to stay, offered no compensation and no apology, not to mention no resolution by the end of the next day. Luckily we were able to find another place to stay on our own.

  • Stayed April 2014
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2014

Great views, friendly staff, tasty drinks, and great value. The guided nature walk was a highlight of my stay. This location is a hidden gem. Highly recommend for those wanting to experience all the beauty that Costa Rica has to offer.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Victoria F, Owner at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, April 11, 2014
Hola Saigonsista! Thanks for your lovely comments, we're delighted that you enjoyed your stay. Miguel, the guide on the nature hike is passionate about what he does and that definitely shines through on his tours. Please do visit again on your next trip to Costa Rica!
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Mississauga
2 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2014

The staff - Robert, Andres, Edson, Xiomara, Nelson, Amelia and the restaurant staff - treated us with patience, were very courteous, and their attention to detail made our stay very relaxing and enjoyable.

The staff is extremely informative, too. I would recommend Arenal Lodge to all travelers to Costa Rica.

We loved the country. Arenal Lodge made it easy with a breathtaking view of the Arenal Volcano Mountain from our room in the chalet. Rooms have a rustic setting; maybe, a little dated. No A-C, but the fan and open windows make for a cool evening. WIFI is in reception area only. Good not to be connected at all times on a vacation.

Beautiful place for hiking. May want a car to get to places, especially with small children.

Thank you to Arenal Lodge for making my stay pleasant and comfortable. Should be back soon.

Saludos Cordiales!


Paurus Kanga

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria F, Owner at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, April 11, 2014
Hi Paurus K! It's always wonderful to hear good things about our staff, thank you for your comments and do visit again soon!
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Bloomer, Wisconsin
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 25, 2014

If your ready for the true experience stay here! No road noise and remote. It was a great stay! Drive up is well worth it if you drove yourself! We loved our rice dinners and the breakfasts! MMMazing. My daughter completely loved the hike with Miquel. He showed us a viper and let us film Blue Morphus butterflies as they hatched! It was incredible. They are in the process of many improvements on the grounds, but it looks great already!

PURA VIDA!

Room Tip: We stayed in 21. Garden View was very nice, I loved the french doors and the deck looking right into...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Victoria F, Owner at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, April 11, 2014
Hi there J0ELJR! We're so happy to hear that you enjoyed your stay and appreciate the true rainforest experience. Thank you for your nice comments and we hope to welcome you back to Arenal Lodge in the not-too-distant future!
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Chicago, Illinois
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2014

Good:
- The Chalet Rooms. These rooms are at the top of the hill with the big picture windows. We switched from the honeymoon suite to a top floor Chalet room for our 3rd & 4th nights here. Great view and a newer room. Lots of outlets, clean, fewer bugs. We would stay at Arenal Lodge again if we could get a top floor Chalet room.
- The grounds are beautiful. The view of the volcano is amazing. The property offers a hiking trail with wonderful scenery.
- The free morning hike with Miguel is well worth it. He is a fun tour guide and takes his time to explain things. You will learn a lot. Wear lots of bug spray!
- The bar. They don't skimp on the alcohol. The mixed drinks are tasty and pretty.
- The breakfast. It is included with the stay and is a self-serve buffet. I can't operate without breakfast and I love big, hot breakfasts. Gallo Pinto, bacon, sausage, eggs, pancakes (didn't eat since I have celiac disease), omelettes to order, fruit, juice, coffee and tea. We sat in front of the window in the dining room and watched the birds feed.
- Staff is very helpful when I approached with questions and our room change request.

Not So Good:
- Arenal Lodge is about a 20 minutes drive from La Fortuna and 2 kilometers up a hill from the main road. The 2 kilometer climb is a small, winding, brick road. We had activities planned, but did not have a car (rentals were sold out in town). We had no choice but to get a cab each day and pay a $30 surcharge, because the lodge is hard to get to. Good thing we liked our cab driver!
- The facilities are dated. It is a humid environment, but everything looks a little tired.
- We stayed in the Honeymoon Suite for our first 2 nights. It is the most expensive room on the grounds, but I don't understand why. It has a lot of space, but it's unnecessary. The couches were old and moist to sit on, there were bugs (dead and alive), the area rugs needed to be vacuumed desperately. If my feet get dirty walking around barefoot inside, I take issue with that! The bed was comfortable. There is a porch, but nowhere to sit outside. My husband tried using the whirlpool bath, but the jets shot out dirt and leaves! When booking the most expensive room on the property, my husband assumed it would be the Chalet Rooms. We were able to switch and those were much improved (see my "good" comments above).
- We ate dinner our first night there. The waiter said we could only order wine by the bottle, so we did. Luckily, we could have it in our room later. The next evening I saw couples ordering by the glass. Makes me feel like I've been hard. They marked the price up quite a bit! We both had steak. Don't bother, it was bad. Stick with the traditional chicken and rice type dishes.
- The swimming pool was freezing and only one of the two Jacuzzi's worked. It's awkward to share a small Jacuzzi with other guests (luckily my husband and I got there first one afternoon), so fixing the second Jacuzzi would be helpful.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
Robert L, Manager at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, March 24, 2014
The jacuzzi you mentioned has been repaired three weeks ago as well as other repairs.
Be assured that we appreciate your comments and will respond with actions to constantly improve performance and installations.
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Herriman, Utah
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 19, 2014

We absolutely loved our stay at the Arenal Lodge! It has some amazing views and you basically feel like you're at the top of the mountain! It was fairly easy to find and all the staff were very helpful and friendly! We spent 3 nights there and loved it! It's not the "Ritz" by any means, but it's a wonderful place to stay and you get a seriously amazing view of Costa Rica and the Arenal Volcano!

They also have a great adventure company right there in the lobby that you can book your tours/activities through! They were super helpful and positive and the experience was amazing with them as well!

The breakfast every morning was really good, but the restaurant for dinner wasn't our favorite, but we still ate there twice for dinner anyway.

All in all, this was an amazing place to stay!

Room Tip: We had room 30, which was a "Garden View" room and it was perfect! Right by the lobby/rest...
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Victoria F, Propietario at Arenal Lodge, responded to this review, March 22, 2014
Thanks for your comments. The refurbishing of our installations are in full swing.
On your next visit we will welcome you in rooms that will offer more perfect comfort and the new menu in our main restaurant will be effective.
Thanks for staying with us.
Regards
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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:
#13 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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