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“A++ service” 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
Davis, California
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“A++ service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 15, 2013

We just got back from Costa Rica, and La Paloma was the high point of our vacation. It was worth the high pricetag, especially when you take into account the activities, transportation and all 3 meals are included. The service is superb, the location beautiful and the rooms lovely. The views from the rooms are unbeatable. There is a lovely little beach (great for body surfing, absolutely deserted) a short hike away. This is not a destination for those who want western comforts. There is no AC (we chose it in part because of this - no noisy electricity at night). It cools at night so sleep is comfortable, but it is hot and sweaty during the day. You will encounter bugs but they are more interesting than pesky. There are no screens, which I was concerned about, but this was NOT a problem as biting insects were almost absent (a few ants, very few mosquitoes - I stopped using repellant after a day or 2). The sound of the surf at night, gazing over the ocean from the hammock, birdwatching from everywhere - all great. The kayaking (free) was great - there isn't a very long river you can go up, but lots to see and good for beginners with a few (optional) run rapids. The mangrove tour was great - a little scary going through the surf to get to and from the river, but great. It is a hot, sweaty location and we had lots of rain (we went during the rainy season so we had anticipated this), but every day was also partially clear so we were able to do all activities. The pool is small but perfect for cooling off in the sweaty afternoon. Several of us enjoyed a great massage (cheap!). Meals were consistently very fresh and quite good. They happily prepared the fish we caught (sashimi, grilled, sushi). Everyone was pleasant and went way out of their way to make sure we had a good time. We very much hope to return!

Room Tip: Sunset villas are nicest (rooms 1,2,3). Rooms 6&7 a little schleppe. Bring a flashlight. If y...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lizzy06osa, Manager at La Paloma Lodge, responded to this review, July 22, 2013
Thank you for this A++ rating. It was a pleasure to host your three generation family trip. La Paloma Lodge wishes to enhance vacation memories. I am thrilled that you enjoyed the experience. We hope that you don't wait another 20 years before coming back.
Happy traveling,
Nichole DuPont
Lodge Manager
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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
CA
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 3, 2013

We were celebrating a big wedding anniversary with a trip to Costa Rica and this place was suggested by our travel agent. Wow! What an idyllic place! Wildlife everywhere with knowledgeable guides to point them out. Delicious healthy meals included as well as the air, taxi and boat transportation to get there. Guided tours all included. Staff were all super nice and attentive. Beautiful accommodations with open air bathrooms, verandas with spectacular ocean views....beautiful grounds. One day without an activity is good so you can enjoy just being there.A few caveats... The boat ride to get there can be nerve wracking in bad weather which we had on our arrival. When it rained, we had to remind ourselves we are in the rain forest in the rainy season so be prepared to go for the activities in the rain.After you've been here, every place else pales in comparison so go towards the end of your Costa Rican adventure"

Room Tip: We had room number 3... It's might be the nicest villa! How did we get it? Only my travel age...
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lizzy06osa, Gerente at La Paloma Lodge, responded to this review, July 16, 2013
Dear Lawrence,
We appreciate you taking the time to write a review for La Paloma. We are happy to hear that you and Ellen enjoyed your stay with us. The purpose of the hotel is to combine the natural beauty of the area while also focusing on the guest experience. During the green season we can get rain throughout the day, but fortunately we have very experienced boat captains that can navigate the choppy waters to insure safety. Congratulations on Ellen and your wedding anniversary. We wish you many more wonderful years of travel and adventure together.
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Marble Falls, Texas
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2013 via mobile

The staff/The resort/the ambience were all phenomenal!
We did not know exactly what to expect, but we were so pleased that this was "A Good Stop!"
It could not have been better!
Thanks Jess and everyone!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
lizzy06osa, Gerente at La Paloma Lodge, responded to this review, July 16, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to write a review for La Paloma Lodge. All of us at La Paloma are delighted to hear that you enjoyed your trip. We are also honored that we got to spend time with Holton on his big 10th birthday trip. We hope to see all of you back at La Paloma again soon.
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Ottawa, Kansas
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 29, 2013 via mobile

We stayed there for 4 days. We have stayed at other hotels in Drake Bay and on the OSA Peninsula and this is the best one. Very personal service, food wonderful, and cottages private and beautiful. Don' miss the "bug lady" tour, or the mangrove kayak. We spent an overnight in Sirena Ranger Station which was fun and took the trip to Cano Island. Don't miss this place!

  • Stayed June 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
lizzy06osa, Owner at La Paloma Lodge, responded to this review, July 4, 2013
Dear Fran,

We appreciate you taking the time to write a review. All of us at La Paloma take great pride in our work, we are happy to hear that you enjoyed the lodge, your rancho, and the tours that you took during your trip. It was our pleasure to host you, Judy and Catherine. We hope to see you again back at La Paloma Lodge.

Best,
Mike and Sue
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Sonoma, California
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2013

I have wanted to stay in an Eco Lodge and experience being in the rain forest and being away from it all. I used the Lonely Planet guide as a start and then looked at comments n Trip Advisor. I was in the Peace Corps in Ghana so was used to the rain forest, but went with my boyfriend who had never done anything like this. It was great for both of us! We were upgraded to a Rancho as it was available and loved the seclusion and being above the canopy, seeing the ocean and the birds. The food was quite good and the staff very nice and helpful. We especially want to thank Jessie the Manager, as she was the right amount of friendly and professional. It turns out that they need four people for a tour, so that as only two, you might not always get the tour you want on the day you want. However, she helps make it work. We loved the Mango tour and the Rain forest park tour. We were lucky, as we were there at the end of the non rainy season, so there were less people and we had tours of only four and in one case, we were by ourselves as no one else was available. It is a beautiful spot and we enjoyed the pool and beach equally. It is good to just enjoy and have a couple of days to just relax. You do need to be able to walk up some small grades of hills, so you need to be in reasonable shape, as you walk up a hill from the boat to the main lodge and rooms. We also did the zip line tour that was available in the area. It was very well done and you had 11 platforms and so 11 zipped. A bit scary as you also had to climb up ladders in the forest at different stations and once you started, you couldn't stop. We also did the bug lady tour which was interesting and the only way we saw the frogs with the red eyes that you see in books. We did have some torrential rains at night, but mostly, it was just beautiful, somewhat humid, but quite wonderful to sleep with the windows open and the breezes. We would definitely come again! Thanks again to Jessie, Pius, Tobias, Patricia, Silus, and Dinia for making our trip so enjoyable. I just saw a review since we had been there and we had bacon every day, but they could have offered different salads every day and I would agree that the night of the fajitas was not enough food. However, the steak and fish dinners were great! I didn't come for the food, I came for the environment which was great!

Room Tip: Our room was closest to the beach. Very quiet, but a good walk in case you have trouble walking.
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  • Stayed April 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.
lizzy06osa, Owner at La Paloma Lodge, responded to this review, June 26, 2013
Lucy,

Thank you for taking the time to write a review. Here at La Paloma Lodge we pride ourselves on excellent customer service while maintaining a balance with the nature that surrounds us. All of us here at La Paloma are delighted to hear that you enjoyed the various tours and the hotel grounds. At La Paloma we are constantly trying to improve every aspect of the hotel and hospitality experience that we offer. The menu offers a delicious variety of international and typical dishes with the freshest produce. We strive to provide a vacation of a lifetime for each of our clients. We appreciate your critique and feedback which we will use to make us better. We hope to see you again at La Paloma Lodge.

Mike and Sue
Owners-La Paloma Lodge
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 5, 2013

I went to La Paloma again in May of 2013, after being there in May of 2012. I could not have had two more diverse experiences. Nicole, the original manager is gone. Let me count the bad things from the 2013 trip. I couldn't get bacon with my breakfast. Not once in 5 days. They were "out". I've been to Drake Bay more than once, if there is one thing that is plentiful, it's pigs and bacon.

They forgot to schedule a horseback ride for another couple that we met. This did not impact me directly, but it again points to a lack of attention to detail.

I scheduled a massage. Had I not gone back to the mgmt and asked them a second time if it had been scheduled, there would have been no massage.

The food portions were either a) small, or b) generally lousy food. Fajitas are not made of fish. Not in any part of Latin America. Ever. Lunches were an overdose of fruit, which is arguably abundant, but can you stop offering me the same crappy dried fish salad day after day after day?

I couldn't wait to go back to La Paloma after we had stayed there in 2012. I can't wait to never go back there again. It was the suck. A solid C minus.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
lizzy06osa, General Manager at La Paloma Lodge, responded to this review, June 27, 2013
Dear Jenny,
I am sorry to read that you were unsatisfied with your vacation at La Paloma this year. Here at the lodge we take criticism to heart and have immediately started implementing change. Your candid review has pushed to re-polish the experience that we share with all of our guests. We pride ourselves in providing each guest with the best experience possible.
The team at La Paloma Lodge is regretful that we did not meet your expectations. We appreciate your feedback.

Nichole DuPont
General Manager
(formally on sabbatical)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fairfax, Virginia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 21, 2013 via mobile

We had a terrific time at La Paloma. The owner, manager, and staff went out of their way to make us feel welcome, quickly learning our names and interests. The guides really know their stuff and couldn't have been nicer. We went scuba diving with Giant Mantas and sharks, saw tapirs, coatis, sloths, four monkey species and more on our hikes to San Pedrillo and La Sirena stations in Corcovado Park, and also enjoyed the mangrove boat tour and the night hike with Gian and Tracie, the "Bug Lady". We logged over 85 bird species during the week. The weather was hot at the end of March but the ceiling fans in our deluxe rancho made for comfortable sleeping even without air conditioning. The food was varied and quite tasty. The only problem was that the week ended too quickly. We'd happily go back again.

Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
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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