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“Excellent stay but poor food” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort

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Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort
4.5 of 5 Resort   |   13 Km Northwest la Fortuna de San Carlos | Arenal, Alajuela, Costa Rica, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park, Costa Rica   |  
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Hotel amenities
Certificate of Excellence 2014
New York City, New York
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Excellent stay but poor food”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2014

My boyfriend and I spent 3 nights here, the first leg of our trip to Costa Rica which also included stops in Monteverde and Tamarindo. The rooms were clean, the hot springs were beautiful, the couples message was amazing, and the service was outstanding.

My compaint about Tabacon is regarding the food. Breakfast is minimum of $20+ dollars, just for juice and an assortement of breads. Dinner is going to be about $40 per person for food that is subpar at best. We ate at both the baffet and the regular restauarant and I didn't think much of either of them. They do have a la carte bar food as well, but even that is quite pricy. I didn't realize how expensive the food really was (since I'm used to NYC prices) until we went to other parts of the country where we had much better food for a fraction of the cost.

Overall, we had a very pleasant experience. I wish we had our own car to leave the resort and eat elsewhere.

Room Tip: We had a ground level room with King size bed. No view, but no complaints. It was fine.
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melania L, Gerente at Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, responded to this review, September 7, 2014
Dear allisonm263

Thank you for your review, your comments are really important to us! Thank you for choosing us as your thermal resort during your visit to Arenal. We are glad to know you and your boyfriend have enjoyed our natural hot springs in the heart of the rainforest. We are happy to know you had a couple massage, that is a memorable moment that incorporates nature into the spa experience, where all treatments are performed in open air bungalows. In regards to your dining experience I forwarded your comments to our food and beverage team, we appreciate your comments. It is my sincere hope that you will give us the opportunity to serve you again in the future and provide the exceptional experience that our guests deserve.

Cordially
Yendry Espinoza
Resort Manager
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2,067 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (305)
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2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2014

Tabacon is a wonderful hotel. We stayed here two nights. The room was beautiful and cleaned. The breakfast buffet is delicious. The spring is incredible; I advise you to go to exclusive part of the spring for hotel guests only. The service was great and always kind and they took care of us. Highly Recommended.

Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TabaconGuestService, Manager at Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, responded to this review, August 29, 2014
Dear Tommaso B

Thank you for sharing your experience with us, we firmly believe that every single detail is part of Tabacon experience. For a relaxing vacation we offer a unique location in the heart of the rainforest at the base of Arenal Volcano with our amazing hot spring river. Shangri-La Gardens is our secluded and exclusive area for hotel guests older than 18 years. Free shuttle is available and there is also a trail that connect the hotel and the thermal springs area. We are glad you enjoyed our buffet breakfast where lots of choices including traditional Costa Rican dishes are included. We are grateful for your preference and we look forward to serve you again in the near future.

Sincerely
Yendry Espinoza
Resort Manager
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San Jose, Costa Rica
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2014

Excellent service, infraestructure, SPA and food.
From my room and extraordinary view of the volcano. The Hotel is 5 minutes from the national park, a place a recommend to visit.
The trails are well marked.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
TabaconGuestService, Manager at Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, responded to this review, August 26, 2014
Hello Julio C

Thank you for sharing your feedback with us, we really appreciate it. We are glad you had a memorable experience at Tabacon, exploring the beautiful surroundings such as the Arenal Volcano National Park is part of the adventure you might have during your visit. As you mentioned, extraordinary rainforest views as well as volcano views will be available for your enjoyment. We offer hotel deals and season special packages so we invite you to take advantage of these promotions for a future visit. It will be an honor to receive you as our guest again at Tabacon.

Regards
Yendry Espinoza
Resort Manager
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Brooklyn, NY
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2014

Where do I start? We are seasoned global travelers from NYC and I can truly say that our stay at Tabacon was one of the best stays ever. We are traveling with our two sons, ages 16 and 12, and had arranged for a suite. When we checked in, we were pleasantly informed that we had been upgraded into a fantastic suite with two bedrooms, living room, deluxe bath and a balcony overlooking the rainforest.

One of the main attractions, of Tabacon is the amazing Thermal Springs which are just across the road. The admission as guest is included to the Spas and is an amazing feature in itself. There are numerous write ups, but Tabacon is truly a natural thermal spring, unlike some other places in the area. We have been to spas in Europe, Mexico, Thailand, and Chile. Tabacon was the best.

The service at the hotel is first rate and efficient. There is no pretense, and every person who works here had been helpful and gracious. We found the food to be very good, and typically would take breakfast there, and be on our way. THe prices are not inexpensive, but in line with what resorts might charge. Our stay here will remain one of the best resorts ever.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled with family
    • 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.
TabaconGuestService, Manager at Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, responded to this review, August 26, 2014
Dear tvbubbles

We really appreciate your review, thank you for sharing your experience during your stay with us. We are glad you visited Arenal for your family vacation in Costa Rica, it was an honor to have you as our guest at Tabacón. We are happy to know you enjoyed the upgrade to one of our two bedroom suites specially designed for families or guests looking for extensive space. As you mentioned our guests receive complimentary access to our thermal area that sits over a completely natural setting surrounded by lush gardens in the heart of the tropical rainforest, we are glad you enjoyed the hot springs as well as the amazing flora and fauna of the region. We look forward to serve you again for a relaxing escape!

Cordially
Yendry Espinoza
Resort Manager
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Phoenix, Arizona
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 23, 2014

We loved our stay at Tabacon Grand Spa and Thermal Resort:
HOTEL:
pro- The service here was impeccable. The hotel staff seemed happy to be there and went out of their way to be ambassadors for Costa Rica. Each person was a mini tour guide and shared their enthusiasm for the country, flora, fauna and Tabacon. This really made our stay pleasurable.
The room service burgers were excellent!! Highly recommend.
con- there was no outdoor space for the rooms. It would have been nice to sit out on a little patio or balcony to enjoy the views. Secondly, there was no comfortable seating in the rooms. There was plenty of space for a sofa or loveseat facing the garden windows in our space.
Would be nice to have cheaper food options. Took a cab to La Fortuna for $38 US dollars for mediocre food at Nene's.
SPRINGS-
PRO- loved everything about this place. It is magical and beautiful and my skin felt great for days afterwards. Loved the Shangri La area for hotel guests. It was romantic and we spent most of our time there. The lockers and shower areas were very clean. It felt like an exclusive club.
CONS- none!!!

Room Tip: We had a garden room and were completely happy with it; except as noted above.
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  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
TabaconGuestService, Manager at Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, responded to this review, August 25, 2014
Dear CarolK512

We really appreciate your comments, thank you for your preference! Our staff is always there to provide the highest quality service and pay attention to every detail in order to create memorable experiences to our valuable guests. We are glad you enjoyed our thermal resort which in fact has been recognized as one of the best worldwide, thanks to its exuberant gardens and the natural hot spring river that emerge naturally from Arenal Volcano. Shangri-La Gardens is our secluded and exclusive area for hotel guests older than 18 years. If you stay multiple nights we have special deals including services such as meals or spa bonus. We would love to have the honor to serve you again in a near future!

Kindest Regards
Yendry Espinoza
Resort Manager
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Rome, Italy
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2014 via mobile

This is indeed one of the best places and hotels seen in my life. Everything is simply perfect.

Starting from the check in, the golf CAR that brings you to your room, the big and confortable standard rooms.. And the amazing hot springs!

You have to eat one night at the tucanos restaurant in the resort... One of the best i've been to... You will spend 2 perfect days!!!

Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TabaconGuestService, Manager at Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, responded to this review, August 25, 2014
Dear lorenza m

Thank you for sharing your experience with us, we firmly believe that every single detail is part of Tabacon experience. From the beautiful Costa Rican scenery, a warm welcome with a tropical cocktail, the room details, our food and beverage selection and the hot springs are key moments in which your experience becomes more enjoyable. Los Tucanes Restaurant is our fine-dining option in the heart of the rainforest, our chef creates a culinary experience with the most succulent ingredients, we are extremely glad that you enjoyed your dinner. We are totally grateful for your preference and we look forward to serve you again in the near future.

Sincerely
Yendry Espinoza
Resort Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 21, 2014

The hot springs area itself was amazing. I would definitely spend time there...we spent a whole 2 days there and it didn't get old (we were on our honeymoon). And as a hotel guest you have access to the Shangri-La Gardens and the cabanas there and it was pretty relaxing and romantic. We loved it!

However, the hotel portion of the resort could be better in terms of customer service for how much you're paying. Everytime we called about something that was meant to be a part of our "romantic breeze package", we were told it would be sent to our room immediately and an hour later still nothing. Even after several phone calls and the same replies and a lot of waiting, we couldn't get anywhere and ended up asking for a manager. If the staff knows something is unavailable or will take a while to sort out, they should have let us know straight away instead of leading us under false pretences and probably should have called us back so we weren't waiting around for nothing!

Also, noone seemed to know we were a part of the "romantic breeze package", so we kept getting asked to pay for stuff we had already paid for. We even had to remind them we were on our "romantic dinner" DURING our romantic dinner!

The cleanliness of the resort is great and the suites themselves are lovely.

  • Stayed August 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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 Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort

Address: 13 Km Northwest la Fortuna de San Carlos | Arenal, Alajuela, Costa Rica, 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 Beverage Selection 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 Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Top resorts Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#4 Luxury Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#4 Business Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#7 Spa Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#12 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#14 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort 4.5*
Number of rooms: 102
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled in the heart of the tropical rainforest at the base of the majestic Arenal Volcano in the northern Region of Costa Rica. This five-star carbon neutral resort offers a unique blend of nature, adventure and relaxation. A member of The Leading Hotels of the World, Tabacon provides luxurious accommodations, services and amenities in a picture-perfect natural setting. The resort's unique healing thermal mineral spring river emerge from the volcanic earth, cascading to form waterfalls, streams, tranquil pools and ponds. Explore Shangri-La Gardens an hotel guests and adults-only hideaway, delight your senses with world- class cuisine inspired by local fares or surprise that special person with a gala dinner in the middle of the rainforest. Inside the gardens is the resort's Grand Spa, member of The Leading Spas of the World which combines a beautiful location with a singular spa experience, where treatments are rendered in open air bungalows all of them with private jacuzzi. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Tabacon Grand Hotel Thermal
Tabacon Grand Resort Thermal
Tabacon Resort
Tabacon Hot Springs
Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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