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RATINGS
Food
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CUISINES
Contemporary, Fusion, Healthy, Costa Rican
Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Vegan Options
Meals
Lunch, Dinner, Drinks
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meals, features, about
Reviews (35)
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Reviewed January 6, 2024 via mobile

Outstanding collection of medicinal and culinary herbs meticulously maintained with fruit trees and foods of the tropics. And the restaurant! Locally sourced foods beautifully prepared in casually elegant space that matches ANY I have experienced in California.

Date of visit: January 2024
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Reviewed December 31, 2023 via mobile

What a beautiful place, the gardens are amazing, the staff are so friendly and helpful. The food is outstanding, we had the taster menu on our last day, it was the best meal we had in the 16 days in Costa Rica, Just wish we...had longer to look at the gardens longer but we were on our way to the airport.More

Date of visit: December 2023
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Reviewed October 27, 2023

What a magical place. The restaurant with its amazing views and great food was an absolute pleasure. And the immense gardens filled with medicinal plants one after the other- were well-maintained and documented. A true incredible experience.

Date of visit: October 2023
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Reviewed October 27, 2023

This is a one of a kind spot. The food is beyond exceptional and the views are incredible. The gardens are the most incredible I’ve ever seen and all of the food is sourced from it. If you are in Costa Rica, you cannot pass...on visiting.More

Date of visit: October 2023
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Reviewed May 6, 2023 via mobile

A beautiful walk in the gardens of plants that shout life in their peak beauty ended with a disaster sit out in the restaurant that was bit empty just by a group of 15 loud women which the staff insisted to sit us next too…...without merci we begged to a quiet table which we got and then a degustasion of food which doesnt have any thought behind any story and inspirations was given us. How such a unique place in this world hold a resturant without a soul - my wife is 9 month pregnant and i had to bag again not to give her life risk food as cesar dressing that somehow find the way to us again, we got cream cheese with carrots that felt like some hallucinations from the kitchen the carrot inside didnt have flavour , the Aztec soup - which is a culinary step in the world tasted like cannes tomato instant sauce for pasta and the ribs was so sweet that its hard to beleive its a farm to table here. I think there is major disconnection somewhere between the farm and table - the food tastes like sugar in any state its been served - the only thing that showed a glimpse was the salad that was fresh and the tastes didnt lost. Such a potential to deliver a story on a plate like they deliver it in the botanica gardens - i really hope someone will get inspired there and make food that will make this place a pilgrimageMore

Date of visit: May 2023
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Reviewed February 27, 2023

My partner and I stopped here for a few hours on our way to the San Jose airport. It was a delightful place for a good walk and incredible views. After the owner gave us a tour of their extensive collection of plants and trees...from around the world, we were welcomed to a beautiful elevated patio for lunch. Because the gardens contain edible plants from around the planet, the chef has a panoply of flavors, textures and colors to create the most beautiful and well balanced meals. We had a six course set menu that included lovely vegetarian alternative dishes. The breezy patio was an ideal perch for looking out over the city and surrounding mountains. This is a stop we will make, again, when we are back in Costa Rica.More

Date of visit: February 2023
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Reviewed January 27, 2023

We spent an amazing morning touring the gardens then had one of the most delicious lunches I've ever enjoyed in their beautiful restaurant. The menu is fixed and varies weekly according to what fresh produce and herbs are currently available in the gardens. (You can...check the current week's menu on their Facebook page.) I would recommend reserving a table since once the word gets out people will be begging to experience this magical spot.More

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed January 1, 2023 via mobile

What a hidden gem! A lovely and calm place with the most extraordinary food and a super friendly team! Highly recommended!

Date of visit: January 2023
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Reviewed December 31, 2022 via mobile

The food was absolutely amazing, each plate was very creative and filled with unique, bold flavors. From the antipasti to the dessert I was wholly satisfied with the taste and presentation of each plate. However the service was abysmal, the receptionist had an awful attitude...and zero willingness to help. Once we entered we were told our booking was for 8 and not for 9 which is what we had reserved a month in advance. The receptionist then told us we would simply have to ‘figure it out’ ourselves but as soon as she realized it was her mistake she quickly found a solution to the problem by adding a chair to our table, this demonstrates there was a clear and simple solution however the unwillingness to help interfered. After this was resolved and we were sat the waiters realized that two people in our party were allergic to garlic, something which had been stated in our reservation one month prior. They argued that nothing could be done as all plates contained garlic and tried to pin the responsibility on us by saying we can’t complain the same day that the change is required. But just as with the previous issue it was once again resolved after the realization that the problem was on their end. It was a shame the service overshadowed the meal as it is truly a special place with phenomenal food.More

Date of visit: December 2022
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Reviewed December 21, 2022

My wife and I (retired couple) visited the Green Ark Foundation (and restaurant) in December 2022. We were very fortunate because through relatives of mine that frequent the gardens, that Tommy (the owner) was there and gave us a tour of around the gardens. The...variety of plants is amazing and one of the highlights of our Costa Rica trip. The restaurant - we had the prix fixe lunch ($25 per person). We opted for the vegetarian option and it was excellent both in presentation and deliciousness. Everything grown at the gardens and I have never had anything quite like it. My wife raves about it as being a singular experience. If you have any interest in botanical gardens and in particular, useful botanicals, I recommend the gardens and the restaurant as it was a highlight of our Costa Rica visit.More

Date of visit: December 2022
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Reviewed December 3, 2022

What a lovely gem near San Jose and the airport! The garden offers self-guided tours and a lunch among other options. The walk was wonderful and the variety of plants amazing. Loved the educational part! The lunch was a set price menu that one can...modify if needed. The six course menu consisted of a variety of locally produced greens and vegetables accompanied by skewers of chicken and a lovely cheesecake. It was delicious! The quality, variety and flavors were excellent. The restaurant is overlooking the valley and the view is spectacular. The Green Arc Foundation is doing wonderful work in conservation and sustainability education. Well worth visiting!More

Date of visit: December 2022
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Reviewed October 23, 2022

What an extraordinary place to stay and having lunch. The thing is "all plants, that are growing and are eatable you have at one location". It`s the pure biodiversity!!!! El Arca

Date of visit: October 2022
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Reviewed July 7, 2022 via mobile

What a beautiful surprise experience at El Arca we didn’t know what to expect it was a recommendation. Gorgeous casual fresh setting surrounded by nature and a 5 course menu that was exceptional. Portions, quality, clean ingredients we left feeling vibrant and nourished the way...food should make you feel.More

Date of visit: July 2022
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Reviewed June 18, 2022 via mobile

Yesterday I visited this wonderful place with a group of friends. The gardens are beautiful, well organized, and contain an extremely wide range of species. The lunch was 6-course, tastefully prepared and healthy. Plants and herbs and other produce is available for purchase. I highly...recommend it for a very satisfying and educational experience at a reasonable price!More

Date of visit: June 2022
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Reviewed June 12, 2022

Delightful new experience in organic dining at a bargain price. I visited El Arca with a group of nearly 30 people. We were given tours of the various garden areas by knowledgeable and friendly bilingual guides. The lunch that followed was delicious and creatively presented...with emphasis on the bounty of the restaurant´s own gardens. The flavors were different and intriguing. The bilingual service was very good which was impressive with such a large group. GREAT value for the money!More

Date of visit: June 2022
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EL ARCA JARDIN BOTANICO Y RESTAURANTE, Santa Barbara - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about El Arca Jardín Botánico y Restaurante

El Arca Jardín Botánico y Restaurante is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travelers:
  • Food: 5
  • Service: 5
  • Value: 5