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“Unique experience” 5 of 5 stars
Review of La Paloma Lodge

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La Paloma Lodge
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Drake Bay, Costa Rica, Drake Bay, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Drake Bay
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Unique experience”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 4, 2013

Unforgettable. Great rooms, super friendly service and fascinating tours.
Don't miss the mangrove tour or Corcovado park . Randall is amazing. We logged 45 birds, two crocs, a cayman, big boa constrictor and all four monkeys.We learned much about biology, pharma and zoology.
Definitely do the night walk with Tracie and John - bugs, spiders and snakes.
Access by plane, van,boat and finally the Limousine up the hill makes for a wonderful adventure.

Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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305 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    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 (70)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cleveland, Ohio
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2013

La Paloma is perfect and quite frankly worth every penny. The grounds are beautiful with lots of flowers and great views of the ocean. The bungalows are nice, clean and spacious. There is a short, but nice walk to the beach (which is great and has pretty good waves). There is also a small pool, which is a great place to hang out after a day of hiking in the rainforest! There are also many opportunities to see wild life right on the property...we saw several monkeys as well as a sloth, boa and crocodile. The staff is wonderful...extremely pleasant and helpful. The food is excellent and we actually really enjoyed the group dinners with the other tourists (I was a little nervous about those at first). As for the activities, we hiked to San Pedrillo and Sirena and also went snorkeling at Cano Island. Everything was great, including the guides. The only thing that I would have done differently would have been to skip Sirena (one hike is sufficient) and do the Mangrove tour instead (which all of the other guests raved about). We also went horseback riding with Wilbur and it was an absolute blast. I would definitely stay here again.

Room Tip: We stayed in rancho #5...it was great and pretty close to the beach path.
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  • Stayed January 2013, 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.
Tahoe City, California, United States
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

While there is a small airport in Drake Bay, accessible from San Jose, we were picked up by boat in Sierpe. A smooth ride down the river, a wave dash at the bar at its mouth, a jaunt across Drake Bay and you're delivered at La Paloma's sheltered bay. You walk up the path to the lodge and it's lush grounds and there you are in paradise. Phenomenal views of the ocean from the Ranchos, wildlife everywhere, and a tasty Dirty Banana rum punch waiting for you at the bar, mixed by the man (!), Tebbs. He and the rest of the staff are all incredibly helpful and friendly, all the way from the owners to the grounds staff. In the rooms you can stare out of the airy windows in the shower at the rainforest around you as you wash off any grime from the day's adventures in preparation for your in-room massage before your amazingly fresh dinner. Not too bad, I'd say. My days there were one of the best travel experiences I've had.

Room Tip: Rancho 1 had more wildlife climbing or flying by in the trees just beyond the balcony than I saw on...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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.
Florida Panhandle, Florida
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2013

Wow....La Paloma is right smack in the middle of an incredibly exotic setting, where guests become close neighbors to monkeys, sloths, arboreal anteaters, brilliant butterflies, toucans and hundreds of bird species. I mean you're nestled right IN the rain forest but you are provided with lovely flagstone pathways all around the premises.You might see the biggest damn toad you've ever seen in your life just walking down to the dining hall. There's a fantastic view from your "rancho", easy access to the beautiful beach; there is some strong undertow to be wary of. The forest trail into "town" is itself an amazing adventure- for sure an ancient path, still well- travelled by locals, that takes you across a slightly swinging bridge, past HUGE bamboo...gorgeous tropical flowers.........if you don't go on any of the scheduled tours that are offered, at least take that 30-40 minute walk into town.

The staff is totally charming and accomodating, providing beautiful sarongs to wear, so every one can feel like they're in an old Tarzan movie ( or Tondelayo, if you're old enough to remember Hedy Lamarr).
Every meal I had was unique and delicious - One could choose between two entrees, and I was actually pleased to not have a lengthy menu - it felt more like I was a dinner guest at someone's home...someone who was an excellent cook! The Teriyaki Tuna was surprisingly the best I've ever had -PERFECTLY cooked - . I don't eat beef or chicken so I was very pleased with all the seafood dishes - an amazing fish chowder, also a great eggplant parmesan...all dishes artistically garnished - (that shows the love) and very imaginative desserts. ( Can't for the life of me figure why that other review said food was horrible) Great spreads of tropical fruits and good fruit juices. I felt they were good portions ( no American style super -sizing). It was so lovely to eat with the other guests and meet folks from different parts of the world. I always had plenty to eat and I had a good appetite every nite after all the adventurous hiking, snorkeling, nature viewing, kayaking, swimming at a water fall, and horse back riding.

Truly amazing opportunities, these hikes into the primordial jungle, and full -on fun on the boat rides. Great boat captains and wonderful guides. Some folks saw whales and a puma on their tours ...we saw a coati mundi, all of the local monkey species, crocodiles, iguanas, amazing birds, beautiful colorful fish, lizards, one snake, leaf cutting ants parading along the massive tree roots....It's unpredictable WHAT you will see , but you are definitely going to see a LOT of exotic wildlife. It was a thrilling privilege to go on the bug tour with Tracie and John, where we saw a beautiful ant eater in a tree, totally bizarre insects, pulled webbing right out of a spider, and heard some of the most amazing scientific information about high-potential cures for diseases being found in venoms and poisons of the local insects and plant life. Oh, and there was that intelligent fungus. Mind-blowing.

I would say the hardest part of the entire stay was that killer hill from the dock to the lodge that you climbed every day...(my calves were screaming..but I sure got in shape during our brief 4 day stay)

I certainly hope to return and can't thank the staff enough for getting us on all the tours we wanted and giving us a beautiful taste of Pura Vida!

Room Tip: We were in # 7, closest to beach access - but a longer walk to dining hall
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 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.
San Jose, Costa Rica
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2013

My wife and I went to La Paloma Lodge for the first part of our honeymoon. It was really quite the experience. We had the rancho room, which had complete privacy, and it's own amazing view. I think every room has a great view, along with bathrooms that allow you to look out into the jungle. We had a private table for meals as well as the family style that they offer. We really liked that option because you get to talk with other friendly guests about the day's travels. We went on the mangrove tour, and the guide was great. The walk to Rio Claro was a lot of fun as well. I definitely recommend this hotel!

  • Stayed January 2013, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Incline Village, Nevada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2013

This place is amazing! It has several individual small houses they call “ranchos.” I love how they are sort of hidden by all the vegetation, but still so close to the main lodge. I stayed in rancho number two and it has an amazing shower. It feels like you are taking a shower in the middle of the jungle, with the luxury of hot water. Everything is clean and the staff is very friendly.

Room Tip: Rancho number 1 or 2 are both amazing! Best views, and privacy.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
London, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
183 reviews 183 reviews
74 hotel reviews
Reviews in 99 cities Reviews in 99 cities
184 helpful votes 184 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2013

It has a great location and you can use it as a base for a large number of activities: whale watching, trekking Corcovado, snorkelling, visiting the mangroves etc. There is a sloth which lives on the hotel grounds and you can see it if you are lucky, much better than you can see sloths elsewhere. Also on the hotel grounds you can see monkeys and a lot of birds, including hummingbirds and toucans.

Rooms are good too. The only snag is the food of which there is very little choice - you eat what they give you and it is not very good either.

One tip: when you arrive, you have to board a dingy at a beach to be taken to the lodge, so expect to get your feet wet. Better arrive in shorts and sandals than in trousers, shoes and socks.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about La Paloma Lodge

Address: Drake Bay, Costa Rica, Drake Bay, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Osa Peninsula > Drake Bay
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Drake Bay
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Drake Bay
#3 Romantic Hotel in Drake Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3 star — La Paloma Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
We have outstanding views of Drake Bay and the Pacific Ocean from our Lodge. Our standard rooms are large and include a private bath and an ocean view balcony. Our ranchos are one and two-story private cabins that also offer balconies with stunning ocean views. They hold up to 6 people and are very spacious. Some are equipped with a bathroom on both the upper and lower level, and are suitable for families or two couples traveling together. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
La Paloma Hotel Drake Bay
La Paloma Drake Bay
La Paloma Lodge Costa Rica/Drake Bay

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