We stayed at La Cusinga for 3 nights during our honeymoon in Costa Rica - and this was the worst place we've been to since we got to Costa Rica - especially compared to the price we payed ($140 per night) and the other reviews on TA which was the basis of choosing this Lodge.
We came to La Cusinga hoping for a nice room and facilities, and a place to relax and unwind - however, since we arrived, there have been multiple problems which completely ruined the experience for us.
When we arrived and saw the room (Gemela 1) it was small, musty smelling (even though it's the dry season), and the bathroom looked like it was 30 years old - yellow and worn out. We asked for another room with a more sensible bathroom, but they showed us an even smaller room without a ceiling fan (just a regular small fan on the wall) - so we said we'll stay at the first room they showed us.
In the morning, the toilet did not work and we had to waste time finding someone in reception and waiting for them to fix it (which they did) but it wasn't pleasant and wasted precious vacation time.
I asked if we can pay more and upgrade the room to the honeymoon suite , but the staff said it was already taken.
We spent the next day outside the hotel, but when we came back there was a complete blackout from 16:00-20:00. They had flashlights for some of the guests but not enough, so we only got a candle for our room. We tried driving to Uvita to eat dinner, but it was dark and raining and quite scary to drive so we went back to La Cusinga. They did manage to cook dinner which was very tasty, but the rest of the evening was passed in complete darkness.
The bed in the room was awful, and each small move made a great wood cracking sound which woke up my wife each time I moved.
The lighting in the room was horrific. The ceiling fan is hooked up below the main lighting, so when the fan is on, all you see in the room are light flickers every time the fan hides and unhides the lighting - when the lighting is set up like this it is really irritating.
You can see a short video of the room while the light and fan are on, to see what I mean , also you can see the horrific state of the bathroom - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kzFyyA5SBsg
When coming back from the beach, which is quite a long walk in such a humid and hot place (about 15 minutes in the forest , with a lot of uneven and slippery stairs) the bathroom did not have hot water - and on top of that almost no water pressure. So we had to shower in cold water and barely enough water to take the sand off. My wife was not able to wash her hair, and I was not able to shave. When we asked the staff why there was no hot water - they said they are an Eco Lodge and only have solar powered hot water so if it's a cloudy day - no hot water. Now, I'm all for being Eco and using Solar power (where I come from it is mandatory to have solar power on all homes and buildings - but we also have the ability to heat the water using electricity). This just doesn't cut it - and I feel like I was fooled to choose this hotel - and the facilities are simply not good enough for what we payed.
In addition to the lack of hot water in some of the days we were there - the showerhead was installed extremely low (maybe 1.75 meters) which means you need to bend your knees to use the shower which is rediculous, and every time to take your hands up to soap, you hit the showerhead.
It's clear that no serious planning took place in designing the rooms, and no effort to keep them in good condition (especially the bathroom).
All that said - there are 2 good points there. The food was excellent and the view is amazing. But that was not enough to make our stay pleasant.
When we told the staff of our problems, they were nice, and tried to do their best - but could not find us a better room and were not able to offer us any real solutions to our issues. They did compensate us for all this by offerring a few free meals - but I still feel I was ripped off.
I will never return to La Cusinga, and I'm sorry I believed all the previous reviews in TA which led me there.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tom thank you for your review! We are not happy with it, but it is your right and we respect it 100%. I just wanted to take a few minutes to touch some points that you make here.
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The time that you were with us, we had 5 days of constant rain winds and bad weather all together, which is not typical for this time of year. This caused for us to not have hot water, that the area from Dominical to Ballena had no electricity for one day. That driving at night was dark and wet. Our sewage systems filled up with water and had some issues. It was during the same time that in the USA cities were also I a standstill and airports closed, the same cold front affected us. This is to give you an idea of the situation.
The room: not sure where and how gave you an idea that it was larger room, all our rooms are similar, the one that has more space is the honeymoon suite. The room you were in did have a problem a few weeks earlier where the bottom part of the shower broke and had to be fixed, to do that we had to take 3 tiles out and replace them with new one (not the same color), as we are full we could not replace all of the tiles, this will be done in low season. We could not change you to another room as we had no other space available (only the single room, for one person) , we did try to compensate as much as we could with given you other additional benefits.
As we are in the middle of a rain forest and we are an Ecolodge that is focused on nature, hikes and nature activities we recommend in our web: What should I pack?
For your visit to the rainforest, we suggest that you bring the following:
-Lightweight, comfortable hiking or walking shoes (waterproof is preferable).
-Lightweight, casual clothing appropriate for hiking. Our dress code at the property is completely informal, so do not worry about bringing dinner jackets or formal apparel.
-Bring a couple of extra shirts as you will be sweating a lot on the hikes.
-Sunscreen, Insect repellent and a Flashlight. When possible, please pack only Panasonic batteries, as these are the only brand of batteries that are recycling in Costa Rica.
-Light raincoat when visiting us during the rainny months.
-If you love spot birds; please do not forget your binoculars.
We are very sorry that you had other expectations of our place, but to say that we are a “Total Ripoff “ is not true and this hurts not only me but all of our team, as we work hard to make this a great place to visit and be one with nature. We sale a product that is a niche, we are one of the few places where you can enjoy a National Park, see whales from your room, hike and encounter flora and fauna that are hard to see anywhere else, we have a trail that goes to the only beach where primary and secondary rainforest comes down to the beach, where you will not see a car, a house or a road. We are a private nature reserve.
But a fraud we are not. I think that some where you thought that we were a resort or more of a luxury hotel, and when you got here your expectations just were not fulfill. We are truly sorry for that, and we did try our hardest to make it right, but it was not sufficient. A one we will take, not a true reflection of us, but we will take it. But that you call us a fraud, that really hurts us as people and as a team that we are.
Again thank you for your feedback.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.