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“Unique and fun, with modern comforts” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Tree Houses Hotel Costa Rica

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Tree Houses Hotel Costa Rica
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300 Meters Norte de Cementerio de la Florencia | Santa Clara, San Carlos, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park, Costa Rica   |  
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New York City, New York
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Unique and fun, with modern comforts”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2012

Where can I begin? We loved the Treehouses! We traveled with 2 adults and 2 teens and stayed here for 5 days. All of us agreed that this was a wonderful place. There are only a few treehouses on the property and it is really more like a unique bed and breakfast rather than a hotel.

We stayed in the Sloth House which has an actual tree growing inside it. The kids stayed in the loft area and we stayed on the ground level. It rained a lot every day, but there was something very peaceful about being up in a treehouse and enjoying the sounds and view of the rain from the room's floor to ceiling windows. We were not bothered at all by the street noise, and loved waking up to the sounds of birds and other animals we certainly do not hear or see at home.

The treehouses have air conditioning, a small bathroom with shower, towels, and ours had a wraparound porch. You do need to bring some of your own toiletries. This is not a fancy, 5-star Vegas hotel. This is a treehouse with modern comforts that make you feel like you are on a little adventure. Just a note - the ladder in the Sloth treehouse up to the loft area is straight up so keep this in mind if you have little children.

The hosts, Mark and Lucy, as others reviewers have noted, are great.They will help organize any tours, car rentals, give you directions, etc. that you need. They are very helpful. We brought back a coconut and realized that we didn't have a knife for it. We just knocked on their door and they helped us cut it.

The nighttime security guard is very nice. He walks around with a machete and gives tours of the ground at night sharing his knowledge of flora and fauna, and pointing out lizards, frogs, insects, and snakes we never would have seen on our own. He is working hard to learn English and seemed to enjoy practicing the language with us. The tour was free, but we did give him a tip.

The grounds of the treehouse are beautiful. You can take a long walk that leads to a waterfall and a river. We did this and picked some fruit off of the trees on the way. We saw an armadillo, monkeys, and huge bamboo trees, and dipped our feet in the river. It is a bit of a walk, and the walk back up is a lot uphill, but it was worth it. Just take some water and give yourself enough time to enjoy the stroll.

One of the highlights of our stay here was the coffee that they bring up to the porch of the treehouse every morning. Also incredible were the amazing breakfasts served on the covered, outside porch in the common area. Not only were the presentations beautiful, they were delicious. From fried yucca to french toast stuffed with banana and cream, these traditional Costa Rican breakfasts were definitely something we looked forward to every day. During breakfast we were greeting by Mark and Lucy's dogs, and had a wonderful view of the many pretty birds that came to eat the food that were put in the bird feeders.

The location is about 30 minutes from La Fortuna, but that is one of the reasons we chose this place. We didn't want to be in the middle of a busy tourist area. We felt it was the best of both worlds - we were a little bit away from it all, but within 30 minutes of not only La Fortuna, but near Monteverde Cloud Forest, places for ziplining, the animal sanctuary Proyecto Asis, and more. We rented a car to get around and didn't have any problems other than getting used to all the hills and curves in the roads.

Thanks to Mark's suggestion, we also went to a local Italian restaurant that my Italian-American husband said was so good it rivaled his mother's cooking. The best part was that when we mentioned Mark to our server, the owner came out and sat down with us for awhile to talk. It was nice going to a place where the locals go, rather than a restaurant filled with tourists.

I highly recommend the Treehouses for anyone who loves nature and is looking for something fun that's a little bit off the beaten path.

Room Tip: The Sloth Treehouse has a ladder that goes straight up to the loft area which might be scary and a l...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
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661 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
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (122)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cape Haze, Florida, United States
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 5, 2012

Anyplace that brings me hot coffee in the morning is on my favorites list!! Can't believe a place with such great service is tucked in the treetops in Costa Rica. This was an amazing place - missed the night walk but everything else was perfect! The walk to the waterfall was really pretty and the waterfall itself was stunning - made for a nice cool down swim after the hike. Flocks of toucans, sunning iguanas in the treetops, hordes of colorful birds - all perfect for our first night in Costa Rica. The shower was the best part - hot water open air - very liberating!! Thank you Mark and Lucy for such an amazing experience - I will be back!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fall City
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 3, 2012

Two nights here. During the first evening, a 6.6 earthquake. Rock and roll! But no big deal. Second night, a very freak windstorm that blew loose a roofing panel on our Toucan treehouse. And despite all this, we definitely will return. Why?
Mark and Lucy. What fabulous hosts. During the windstorm the loose panel created such a racket we woke Mark up at 1:45 a.m. and asked if we could move. No problem, no fuss. He moved us to another tree house and we slept till 5:30 a.m. when the howler-monkey alarm went off. We had to get up anyway, since we were driving to Liberia to catch our flight. Lucy had already made us a breakfast, and as we dropped off the keys, came out with free hot coffee. at 5:30 a.m., mind you. I've traveled frequently for business and pleasure and rarely see this level of customer dedication.
The night watchman. Can't remember his name, but he took us and a German couple on a night-time wildlife search - two hours long. Saw sloths, cool frogs and heard the howler monkeys complaining about the high winds. DO NOT MISS! He does this for tips only and to practice his English. We absolutely loved talking with him and working through our poor Spanish and his passable English.
The treehouse. Toucan is an excellent choice. It is about 20 feet off the ground, built on sturdy metal supports and attached to a tree, and is small but more than adequate for two people, plus room for two kids in a loft. We were lying in bed about 7 a.m. listening to the birds when one of the hotel staff climbed the stairs to drop off free coffee. We sat out on the porch listening to/watching birds and drinking our morning cup. Yes we could hear the trucks using their damnable jake brakes, but there were exactly three of those (the first night) between 5 and 7 a.m. We slept with the windows open, no air conditioning, and loved the experience.
The waterfall. The walk is actually less than a mile. We did it in about 20 minutes. Saw toucans, parakeets and harvested a couple oranges along the way. The waterfall pool is chilly but once in, delightful. We were there early in the morning, no one around, and yes, it's a delightful place for skinny dipping :). An aside: in an earlier, sour-grapes commentary, one guy whines about the length of the hike. Dude, I'm in my early 60s and the hike is nothing if you are in reasonable shape.
Getting there: coming from La Fortuna (which we did) the place is relatively easy to find. About 20 minutes out, you cross a river, pass a gravel pit, and the hotel is just beyond it, on the left. Coming from San Jose, it's much more complicated. Call the hotel, and be sure to have a GPS.
All up, this hotel was a highlight of our two-week trip. We're easy keepers, but the staff, the breakfast, the overall experience and the location were awesome. One last point: be sure to ask Mark about the small restaurant about 100 yards away. It has a fabulous view of Arenal and sunset view is phenomenal. All up, this place is a 6 on scale of 5.

Room Tip: Toucan is a great choice. Lots of early morning hummingbirds.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Audubon, Pennsylvania
2 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 29, 2012

I wanted to enjoy all the Costa Rica had to offer, but was a bit nervous to stay in a treehouse, as I am not super comfortable with nature. Needless to say, I was able to enjoy all that the area had to offer, while still having a nice shower and AC when needed.

Mark was fantastic. He is super friendly and very knowledgeable. he suggested several places to eat along with local vendors and all were great. He knows the area and has carefully selected places in the area that will provide you with quality, authentic cuisine and gifts and tours. He is also knowledgeable about the area and is enthusiastic to share. The treehouses are a bit of a drive from the center of activity, but we were more interested in enjoying our surroundings instead of being in the center of a tourist area.

some people have been harsh on the treehouse rooms, but they are not a Hilton or Marriott. They are wooden cabins lofted high into the trees. We stayed in the monkey house. The treehouse was very clean . The room had a small safe and fridge and nice bathroom. The top of the shower is open to the outside with screens so you can enjoy the sounds of nature. The room is surrounded by windows with solid screens so you can open the windows or use the ac. There is a little bit of noise from trucks on the road, but it was no louder than the room I had at the Hilton by the airport before we flew out. Our room also had a small porch which wrapped around. we enjoyed relaxing outside and birdwatching and drinking coffe which is freshly delivered every morning. We also had massages on our deck which was amazing. The treehouses do sway a bit in the breeze or with heavy footsteps, but are solid.

Coffee appears on your porch every morning and is a great treat. breakfast is also provided daily and delicious. I do not eat eggs, but all of the fruit and juice were plenty to tide me over to lunch. My husband enjoyed the egg items and said they were also delicious.

There is hiking to do and we enjoyed that as well. Like I said I have never been a huge nature person, so I wasn't sure about all of the hiking. The trails we well groomed and I felt safe at all times. It was not to difficult, but did have some hills. We found that venturing out early in the morning is best, due to the frequent showers in the afternoon.

All of the staff were super friendly and helpful. Rolando the night guard gives some evening tours and turns on all of the porch lights at night so that you don't come home in the dark.

We also took a volcano hike tour and trip to the Baldi Springs which Mark set up for us. Juan- our guide was personnable, knowledgable and most accomodating.

We stayed at three different locations during our trip and in the end we wished that we had stayed at the treehouses the whole time.

The treehouse is not your typical hotel, but it was a unique and awesome experience. A great way to relax and enjoy nature while maintaining a few basic comforts of home.

Can't wait to return!!

Room Tip: AC at night helped to drown out noise. We slept one night with the windows open. We did hear a few t...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
Portland, OR
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 28, 2012

Stayed in the Sloth tree house for 2 nights during our Costa Rica trip and we loved our time here. Mark was great to work with from the beginning, while booking our stay and also arranging the day tour for us with Juan Carlos (which was fantastic!). The tree house itself was just as it's pictured, and it really was a highlight of our trip. The morning coffee on our deck was a great touch and the breakfasts were also delicious. We ate at the restaurant down the road twice (I can't recall the name at the moment) and had nice meals each time. I would definitely recommend the Tree Houses Hotel for a once in a lifetime experience in Costa Rica.

Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
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San Diego, California
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2012

We had our wedding at The Tree Houses Hotel in Santa Clara, Costa Rica in Sept 2012. Including ourselves, their were a total of 20 people and we all stayed in tree houses! Mark and his wife, Lucy spent months on end e-mailing and coordinating plans with the locals to accommodate ALL we wanted to incorporate into our dream wedding. Mark claims that this was his first time planning and essentially hosting a wedding, considering that only one couple had used the hotel as a wedding venue in the past and they were alone with an officiant. I have a difficult time accepting that claim because the man has a gift.
He was SO thorough, efficient, timely, and friendly throughout the entire process. In fact, I doubt I could have accomplished such an intricate, intimate three days without his help. Mark helped me brain storm ideas, he helped us find a local restaurant that could host a reception dinner, he found a dinner venue for the night before the wedding, he worked with his staff to accommodate a dinner the night we all arrived and he did all of this within our budget!
All in all, our wedding at the Tree Houses Hotel incorporated 3 days of activities (white water rafting, horseback riding, & walks through the rainforest), the most delicious food you could imagine (home cooked!), and the friendliest, welcoming staff. We had fresh coffee each morning and fresh baked bread/muffins on the morning of the wedding.
Mark & Lucy went above and beyond our 'agreements' and never expected anything in return. They organized beautiful flower arrangements far beyond my expectations and even let us take a few to the reception location!

We cannot thank Mark, Lucy and their wonderful staff enough for all they did to make our special day unforgettable!

  • Stayed September 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alexandria Bay, New York
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 21, 2012

We were disappointed with our stay here...granted Mark was very nice and helpful, but that did not make up for the fact that we paid $112 a night for the TINIEST "room" I have ever stayed in. First off the room was not even big enough for 1 average sized male and 1 small female to move around even remotely comfortably. To get to either the bathroom or the shower, the other person either had to be on the bed or out on the deck to get into them. Oh and not to be picky, but its not even really a "treehouse", its a shanty on stilts that shakes from the wind or any tiny movement the whole time. Also you need to be aware that this "waterfall and dipping pools" that they advertise are about 2 miles away, so be prepared to hike up and down some pretty steep hills in the hot costa rican sun to even get to them....and they really aren't that great anyways. Also be aware that it is not close to Arenal Volcano...it is about 30 minutes outside of La Fortuna, so every time you want to do anything you have a pretty substantial drive, and there is really not much to do on the property itself. On a positive note, we were leaving very early one morning and they were helpful by leaving granola and fresh fruit in our room for us so we had something to eat before we got on the road. I am not trying to hurt anyone, as Mark and the staff were very friendly and helpful, but I feel that people need to be aware of these facts. Be aware that there are LOTS of very affordable places to stay in La Fortuna that are a much better deal! I wish we had known better, but you live and you learn. Hope this helps you when making your decision to stay here.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Treehouseshotel, Owner at Tree Houses Hotel Costa Rica, responded to this review, October 24, 2012
Tree Houses is a unique setting that brings people closer to nature and is different from a typical hotel. Unfortunately, some people don't embrace the unique nature of being in a tree house and we are sorry that the guests did not enjoy their time here. The Toucan tree house is our coziest and most romantic tree house and countless people enjoy their time there. It does move, because it is attached to a tree and when the tree moves with the winds, so does the tree house. All of the tree houses are built extremely sturdy and are much nicer than most typical hotel rooms. We state on our Web site our distance from Fortuna (there are some great attractions close to Tree Houses: Proyecto Asis, the crocodile farm at the university, the Balsa River for rafting, etc.). The trail to the waterfall is a nice hike that people enjoy taking their time to see what they can spot (toucans, monkeys, sloths).

Raeann, Lucy and Mark
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Additional Information about Tree Houses Hotel Costa Rica

Address: 300 Meters Norte de Cementerio de la Florencia | Santa Clara, San Carlos, 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:
Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Shuttle Bus service Spa Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Best Value Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#3 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#3 Spa Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#4 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tree Houses Hotel is a bed and breakfast hotel conveniently located off the main road that runs through La Fortuna and around the Arenal Volcano. We are a short 25 minute drive to the high tourist area. People seek us out with that in mind, to be away from it all but close enough to enjoy all the fun adventure the La Fortuna, Arenal Volcano area has to offer.We have just 5 tree houses (each very private) on 8 acres and we are surrounded by a 70 acre wildlife refuge with a waterfall, pools to swim and a beautiful river. Each tree house features A/C, warm water showers, refrigerators and safes.There are few hotels like this in the world and none other in Costa Rica. There is something so very exciting about spending the night high in the forest canopy, wildlife all around you, safe and cozy in a tree house hotel in Costa Rica. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Tree Hotel In Costa Rica
Tree Houses Hotel Costa Rica Arenal Volcano National Park

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