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“Breathtaking resort in Arenal!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Lost Iguana Resort & Spa

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Lost Iguana Resort & Spa
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   1.5 km North of Arenal dam, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park A2004, Costa Rica   |  
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Encinitas, California
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Breathtaking resort in Arenal!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 20, 2012

My family and I loved this hotel. There are several things that make it special. The first is the arrival experience; we had been heading to this hotel for hours and we were pretty tired. I guess that was evident and our bags were quickly taken to our room by a staff member along with our driver (we had so many bags they drove it up there ha) and we were in the lobby drinking some sort of fruit drink. Really good!

So after my dad signed some papers (less than 30 seconds...seemed like it was already done), we were offered a ride up to the "room", but we decided to walk. This property is pretty hilly and more so than I expected....but it does give you the great view. It is also spread out, but it's fun wandering through the tropical plants on the trails and ending up at the pool or at more trails!

The "room" was amazing. I attached some photos to show you what I mean: A nice sized living/common area with chairs on the back patio with a drop-dead send a postcard view of the volcano. It couldn't get any better in terms of the view. My brother and I shared a room, which was gigantic. I think we both had king beds and the view was amazing as well....the beds were great and it was just a great look. My parents loved their bedroom with an amazing outdoor shower and a outdoor bathtub overlooking the volcano!

It is all very private and I loved how spacious it was. I was most surprised at the size of the room my brother & I shared and how nice the furnishings were.

It was pretty rainy the entire time I was there, but one day we saw the volcano in all its glory and it was epic!

Great hotel if you're in the area and nice for families as some of their villas/casitas are pretty big. Our family loved it and my brother and I could chat/play games all night long and my parents wouldn't be bothered.

The staff is wonderful and the housekeeping is as well. A nice find! However, I don't know if all of their rooms are that big....we got the bigger one just because we had four people with us. But it's worth it because the view is great, it's private and although we're a loving family, it's nice to be able to spread out at times and do different things.

Would love to go back!

Room Tip: Get the bigger rooms/suites....privacy, views and their huge
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
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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
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (256)
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Sacramento, California
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2012

We have visited many hotels in the Arenal Volcano area and The Lost Iguana is our favorite. The design of the hotel is in perfect harmony with nature. The resort is built into the rainforest with a design that compliments nature instead of overshadowing it.

The rooms are extremely luxurious. We love the private Jacuzzi on the patio of the room along with the private rain showers.

From the moment we arrived we received nothing but the best customer service from the staff. They let us know we could call them at any time to be shuttled around the resort via golf cart. The twin pools (one chilled one warm) are a perfect way to unwind after a day of activities. We also enjoyed the swim up bar and bar stools in the water.

Oh and the breakfast! The breakfast is included in the price of the room but is far superior to other hotel breakfast options. We have full on meals (huevos rancheros, pancakes, sausage etc.) and fabulous coffees and teas.

Overall, I find the Lost Iguana to be a great value for the price. Many other resorts in the area are more expensive but don't offer this level of service, luxury or cuisine. Can't wait to return!

Room Tip: Go for the luxury suite so you have a private Jacuzzi and indoor/outdoor shower.
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  • Stayed December 2012, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oakville, Ontario, Canada
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2012

I've always wanted to experience a real jungle rain forest and the Lost Iguana is the perfect place to do so. We stayed in room 23 which was very spacious, nicely decorated, beautiful view with its own pond just outside the balcony, BUT the best part of the room for me was the outdoor shower. You walk through the bathroom and and the other side you walk into a huge two person shower room surrounded by plants but at the same time screened in so the bugs don't get in. The spring fed water is so soft too.

There's lots to do in the area as you can see from my trailer: http://youtu.be/y3L_kSKqqWw

Access road to The Lost Iguana is at the West end of the dam situated at the East end of Lake Arenal.

  • Stayed December 2012, 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.
Washington DC, District of Columbia
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 10, 2012

My wife and I had our wedding at Lost Iguana in November 2012 and were absolutely blown away by the wonderful service, great food, terrific location, and marvelous logistical management by the staff, especially Maritza!


We found Lost Iguana by searching in Trip Advisor and working with several of the hotels in the Arenal area over a few months before we decided to select Lost Iguana as our venue. After working for several months with their previous wedding organizer, Isabel, who is wonderful and moved to be closer to family, Maritza took over about a month before the wedding. She did a spectacular job taking over and organizing the logistics in a short period of time.


Upon our arrival at Lost Iguana, we found that the friendly reception and professionalism of the staff exceeded our expectations, specifically Alex and Viviana who greeted us. The wedding welcome bags and favors that we had planned were executed flawlessly and the staff threw in accompanying flourishes that beautifully accented what we had in mind.


When we walked into our room, we found that every detail was meticulously attended to - thanks to Anna and Anita - from the perfect towel animals on our bed to the floral accompaniments throughout our suite, even including flower petals arranged in a heart design on the floor to greet us, and candles and flowers surrounding the jacuzzi on the balcony. We would agree with the other comments regarding the lack of lighting along the paths and in the rooms, which would be easy to upgrade and much appreciated.


Our initial in-person meeting with Maritza, Rocio, and other Lost Iguana staff was arranged promptly and every question or request that we asked was responded to completely. The entire wedding plan was reviewed to our satisfaction and we were left with a good feeling that everything was set to go - We were absolutely correct as it all unfolded! The wedding bouquet and boutonniere images that my wife sent as examples were matched perfectly; the beautiful flowers were all freshly cut for the ceremony and reception, and they decorated our room for days after our wedding; equipment at the Pavilion was easily arranged with ample hidden power outlets; the wedding reception dinner tables were set perfectly and enhanced the natural surrounding beauty even more; and the flavors and display of the chocolate favors were just right. We were even super fortunate with the weather; it rained and was foggy every day during our stay in Arenal except for the day of our wedding, which was beautiful and we were so thankful for - we even had a lovely view of most of the volcano. Beyond the organization of our wedding, I felt a genuine friendship and trust with Maritza, and was particularly humbled when I noticed tears in her eyes during the ceremony. It was very special.


While it did not end up being a major issue, we would have appreciated having more powerful speakers, as the music level was too low for dancing during the reception. It was a relatively small wedding and everyone seemed to really be enjoying themselves all night with good company, conversation, food, and drinks, so this minor issue went fairly unnoticed and didn't bother us too much. In addition, there was a large amount of leftover food and desserts, which we forgot to ask about while we were there and having a great time, but we hope that it went to good use. If we had realized at the time and planned for this possibility in advance, we would have ensured that it was donated to a good local cause. A few other things that we had not really considered or planned in advance were the timing of the champagne toast, which was served before dinner and could have been a little later into the meal when our guests were prepared for it, as well as the timing of the dessert. Instead of a traditional cake, we opted for an ice cream sundae bar (since we love ice cream and the flavors were indeed delicious!). The ice cream was brought out a little early and before we realized that it was there, so it started to melt a bit before our guests were served. None of these things were major issues during the event and only things that we thought about later, but they're just things to keep in mind to consider when planning and improve in the future. Even though we tried to keep most of it relatively simple, non-traditional, and low-key (as we planned from a distance over email), there are so many little details involved in planning weddings and the Lost Iguana staff really did a wonderful job overall. Our photos can only capture a portion of the beauty that we experienced there in person.


Everyone loved the delicious breakfasts that were served each morning. I had the chance to enjoy the friendly company of Marco at breakfast as he pointed out birds that flew by to enjoy the treats that he had put out for them. He even put out word to the staff that I was hoping to see a toucan during my visit and thanks to the attentive Lost Iguana staff, I saw two at the resort!


We greatly enjoyed a couples massage at the Golden Gecko Spa and loved every second of it. The skills of the masseuses were accompanied by a well-appointed bungalow, with a gently crackling fire in the fireplace, not-overpowering scents in the air, and natural soundtrack of the nearby river and jungle. Everyone in our party who went to the spa remarked that they had the best massages of their lives there.


The final piece that made our stay above-and-beyond expectation was enjoying breakfast with the resort proprietor a couple days after the wedding. My wife and I enjoyed chatting with Elaine and learning more about the resort and La Fortuna area, and we sincerely appreciated taking wedding photos from her balcony.


Overall, Lost Iguana is a beautiful, amazing place for a unique wedding and stay in general. It's close to so many various activities for guests to enjoy during their stay, and everyone had a wonderful time. Thank you for everything and we hope to visit again soon!

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
West Palm Beach, Florida
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 27, 2012

Our first visit to Costa Rica. I would Highly recommend The Lost Iguana Resort if you are looking for a natural, tranquil, peaceful place to vacation. The resort was more spread out and larger than I had expected, but not too big. There were a few paths that served as short cuts around the property. It is very hilly and the golf cart is available to bring you around the property if needed. Absolutely Amazing views of the Arenal volcano, especially from our room/patio, pool and dining areas. Truly unbelieveable! The property was set back in, off of the main road, very natural and eco friendly. The accomodations were incredible. We had an open aired lava rock shower (which had a screen as the ceiling, therefore if it rained outside it rained in the shower as well) and outside jacuzzi tub that we enjoyed using daily. Very private patio. Our room was the always very clean and the kids looked forward to seeing the different towel art each day. Our trip was during the end of the rainy season (end of Oct.), but loved it! It rained off and on usually every day, a little cool at times depending on the clouds. The bird/insect/animal sounds can not be replicated, we couldn't get enough of them. We had hummingbirds at arms length outside of our patio all day long (even in the rain). We also enjoyed watching the many other birds, butterflies and Leaf cutter ants (hardest workers in Costa Rica!). The property offers it's own hiking trails, which were enough for us as we traveled with two young children. Hanging bridges are either a hike or golf cart ride (from resort staff) away. We were able to go into the town of La Fortuna and walk around. We also went to the local hot river, both were close by the resort. The staff were very friendly and always went above and beyond to accomodate us. The restaurant is open all day long from 7am-9pm. Happy hour at the pool was a nice time to socialize with other guests. The upper pool with swim up bar was heated (as necessary), like a big jacuzzi. The resort was not too crowded during our stay, which was wonderful for us!! I utilized the spa on two different occasions and have to say that it was the BEST ever!! The spa is located near a small brook, is open aired so you hear lots and lots of beautiful sounds (insect and bird noises). The rooms have a fire place which was nice as it was chilly at night, truly incredible!! I fell fast asleep both times I visited the spa. It is absolutely a place that I will return to.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 25, 2012

Nestled in the jungle on the side of a hill facing Arenal Volcano, Lost Iguana Lodge is a beautiful full service resort and spa. We were in room 5, which is a corner first floor suite with a lovely outdoor shower and a jacuzzi tub on the patio, which had an incredible view of the volcano! It had a king sized bed and a sitting area next to a mini kitchenette. Sitting on the patio in the early mornings, enjoying the coffee and the birds was wonderful and peaceful! There were plenty of birds to watch, hummingbirds, parrots, toucans, etc.
The swim-up bar in the heated pool was a nice touch, although it was too cold to go into the unheated pool at the time we were there. The breakfasts on the terrace in the restaurant were just lovely, with a buffet of fruits and pastries as well as anything we wanted from the menu. Wifi was a bit sketchy in our room, but was very strong in the main lobby area. Everyone on the staff was very friendly and helpful!
Since we were celebrating our 40th anniversary, our kids gave us a wonderful couples massage at the spa and with nothing but the sounds of the jungle and the thunder as our background music, we can't say enough about what a magical experience that was! It was followed by a romantic dinner on the terrace, what an experience!!
While there, we visited La Fortuna, Arenal and Nuevo Arenal. Just up the road is the Suspension bridges trail, which was amazing!

  • Stayed November 2012, 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Jose, Costa Rica
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 23, 2012

This hotel is excellent. Nestled in the mountains overlooking lake Arenal, and surrounded by lush and exotic forests, this was by far one of the most relaxing places I have ever stayed! The staff is extremely friendly and helpful. My wife and I celebrated our anniversary there, and they went out of their way to make our experience wonderful. The restaurant is wonderful. Alos, the spa and services are unbelievable. The spa overlooks a small river (or brook), resulting in a calm and smoothing sound, rather then the typically pre-recorded river sounds. Just a fantastic place.

  • Stayed November 2012, 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Lost Iguana Resort & Spa

Address: 1.5 km North of Arenal dam, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park A2004, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#6 Spa Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#7 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#10 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Lost Iguana Resort & Spa 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Lost Iguana Resort is Arenal's newest hotel, offering luxury accommodations in the rain forest The resort's 100 acre property overlooks the world's most active volcano, Arenal Volcano located near La Fortuna, Costa Rica. A premiere, upscale retreat nestled gently in the jungle, the Lost Iguana Resort only offers rooms with large private balconies overlooking the Arenal Volcano and Arenal River Gorge. All rooms are spacious and well appointed with first-class furnishings, artwork and full amenities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Lost Iguana Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Lost Iguana Resort And Spa
Hotel Lost Iguana
Lost Iguana Resort & Spa Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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