Our group spent three days at the Arenal Paraiso. It's a beautiful setting with great views of the volcano. The grounds are lovely, the pool is sparkling clean, the hot pools are inviting. But at the same time, overall maintenance is spotty and the food could be more thoughtfully planned.
On the maintenance and operations side, my room had a fridge that was not working (and was missing a leg, so it wobbled). I reported this to the front desk immediately and they promised to send someone out to fix it. When I checked out 3 days later, as far as I could tell, no one had ever come by.
Hot water in the shower can also be a problem, where it starts out fine, then turns cold, then maybe, if you stay in long enough, warms up again. Not sure what's behind this but it makes for uncomfortable showers. I also noticed that the towels were not very absorbent and it took two of them for me to dry off completely.
I enjoyed the pool immensely, just to get relief from the hot, humid weather. However, the pool is a true safety hazard. The steps leading into it are very slick tile and it is very easy to lose your footing, fall and injure yourself. Which is exactly what happened to one of the people I was traveling with. I am astounded that this condition persists for a hazard that could seriously hurt someone.
It's hard to assess the food. The quality is generally good, but the selections are limited. Lunch and dinner are table-service affairs rather than buffets, so you get large portions of food you may not want.
I would generally not compare hotels in developing countries (like Costa Rica) to hotels that aspire to similar levels of service and comfort in the US, but the Arenal Paraiso really does try to present itself as a world class resort, and, with the items I noted above, it does not make the grade.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Enjoy of cozy & comfortable rooms surrounded by tropical gardens, with the best view of Arenal Volcano. Discover the wellness of our hot springs and our Mayin Spa. Taste the Costa Rica flavor, international cuisine and the best steak house in the area. Feel the adrenaline on our Canopy Tour, and take the best shots of Arenal volcano on our horseback riding. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Arenal Paraiso Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
- Arenal Paraiso Hotel Resort And Spa
- Hotel Arenal Paraiso
- Arenal Paraiso Hotel Resort & Spa Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park