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“My Monkey Mirror's Incredible Journey” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Coco Loco Art Studio & Gallery

Coco Loco Art Studio & Gallery
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Attraction details
Owner description: Coco Loco is a FAIR TRADE work shop & gallery for fine local crafts & artwork with a special focus on Costa Rican indigenous culture. It is located 14 km SE of La Fortuna on national route 702 (La Fortuna-San Ramon). Besides indigenous arts & Boruca masks Coco Loco also exhibits the original artwork (arte DK) of the owner, Ruth Deiseroth-Kweton, who works in her studio next to the gallery. As a mixed-media artist Ruth uses any kind of material of the surrounding rainforest to paint and work on: wooden artefacts and surfaces, plant leaves, stones etc. She creates masks, vases, mirrors, crosses and paintings.
Atlanta, Georgia
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“My Monkey Mirror's Incredible Journey”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 16, 2012

I visited this gallery/studio in November and bought a number of pieces for myself and to give as gifts. The largest of these was one of Ruth's fanciful mirror creations incorporating carved wooden monkeys and mirrors which she applied to the inside of a large wooden tamale-making platter. VERY heavy so she shipped it and my other pieces to me at no cost. Despite the copius amounts of foam padding and shrink wrap used in its packaging, the Monkey Mirror arrived with the mirror's glass broken during shipment. I was dismayed and contacted Ruth immediately by email. She assured me that she would take care of the repair and reimburse me for the cost of sending it from Atlanta to Costa Rica. Dismay for me again when the US Postal Service informed me that the box was larger than they allowed! Since this was the very same box that it arrived in and still bore the USPS labels, they reluctantly agreed to ship it again. The shipping cost? $100 YIKES! Should I incur this additional expense? Would I ever see it again? Would it arrive broken again? Trusting in the honesty of my fellow man, I sent my Monkey Mirror back to its creator in Costa Rica. Ruth and I stayed in touch by email for the next few months. My Monkey Mirror had to spend quite some time with Costa Rican Customs once it arrived in San Jose because of the box size. Fortunately the people of Costa Rica are easy to deal with and Ruth's husband was able to rescue the monkeys and get them back to her at their studio. True to her word, not only was my Monkey Mirror beautifully repaired by Ruth, but all of my shipping cost was reimbursed, and my piece is now hanging in a prominent place in my Atlanta home!

Visited November 2011
Helpful?
1 Thank Katfishmandoo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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39 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Long Beach, California
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A Hidden Gem”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 26, 2012

We heard about the gallery from thela Fortuna hotel because we were looking for original art which was not packed with tourists. We visited the gallery on our way to Alajuela. There were enough signs for the gallery that we did not get lost. Once, we got there, we noticed Alfons was working on a piece of art. He greeted us graciously, and told us if we have any questions, please dont hesitate to ask. As we walked around the back studio, we felt like the owners gave real meaning to art because it was a beautiful location in the middle of rainforest, mango tree at the entrance of the back studio and many more trees surrounding the property.
Alfons went over the significance of native masks called Boruka masks in details. Furthermore, he insured that the gallery gave each artist full credit of each mask along with the earnings. He was very polite and eager to explain how he and his wife moved from Germany and have come to love Costa Rica. We had a wonderful time at the gallery resulting in numerous purchases which all arrived in a timely manner. We enjoyed the conversation and would definitely go back.

Visited January 2012
Helpful?
Thank Adam J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Burbank, California
2 reviews
“A hidden gem that is absolutely worth stopping for”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 3, 2012

Saw this quaint Art studio while driving towards tabacon/arenal volcano and so glad we decided to make the stop. Ruth was delightful and the assortment of treasures was spectacular. Do yourself a favor and make this a point of interest while going up to the volcano. You'll be glad you did!

Visited February 2012
Helpful?
Thank Bigcalbowski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Okay but not all that”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 16, 2012

I decided to check it out based on the positive reviews and that it was right next to where I was staying. I wouldn't go out of my way to visit this place. It is a bit far from Fortuna. I went there with my husband and nobody greeted us. The art was okay. it was hard to focus because I was being bitten by so many mosquitoes...and I haven't had this problem on my trip thus far! Anyway, I liked the pottery but the rest wasn't so great. I was a bit annoyed because the owner never even said hello. I was walking to the next section and I assumed it was her and said hello and she acted strangely and didn't even respond. I was only sure she was the owner when I went to pay for my pottery. Very strange interaction. She just handed me a sheet that explained who made the work and that's it.

Visited January 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank paradois
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
artedk, Owner at Coco Loco Art Studio & Gallery, responded to this review, January 18, 2012
Thank's for taking the time to provide your feedback regarding my art gallery and craft workshop. I am certainly disappointed that your visit was not all that it could have been.

I am crafting my artwork in my own workshop and selling my pieces in my art gallery next door. I am aware that I have those moments when I am focused on my artwork and I am called to the gallery to attend visitors. Those are the moments I would love to have a sales representative taking proper care of my customers while I finish my artwork. On the other hand most visitors so far seemed happy to stroll through my gallery on their own without a salesperson on their heels. If they needed information or just wanted to chat I tried my best to be available. Now I am aware that I have to try harder and find the better balance between work and customer service in those conflicting moments.

My gallery is located in our own 20 acres rainforest reserve with tropical gardens and abundant wildlife. It is an open building blended into the lush tropical vegetation. I received many compliments so far for this combination of artwork and nature preservation. In fact, many visitors take advantage of the stop and walk through our gardens taking photos or just enjoying the touch with the rainforest. Unfortunately, mosquitoes are part of our amazing ecosystem. Really sorry that their presence interfered with your visit.

Once again please do accept my apologies and I do hope that the remainder of your trip to our beautiful country was most enjoyable.

Ruth, owner & artist of Coco Loco Art Gallery & Craft Workshop
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia Area
Level Contributor
22 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Stop, Shop, Stay at Galeria Coco Loco and Hummingbird Cottage!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 23, 2011

Easily located along the road to Fortuna and Arenal, Galeria Coco Loco is a place I have visited more than once. The gallery is stocked with lovely pieces of quality local art of many types - my favorites are the masks and ceramics. I too, am tired of seeing mass-produced trinkets for sale to the masses and am on a quest to shine more light on true local art. In this, I applaud Coco Loco! Alfons and Ruth are knowledgeable and genuine - I spent some hours learning from their experiences and found my visit to be quite refreshing!
Hummingbird cottage is artistically appointed and comfortable and Ruth and Alfons are gracious hosts. My breakfasts were hot, delicious meals with fresh fruits, pipa and a pot of coffee. I enjoyed a tour of the property and delighted in the reforestation efforts there. I'm glad to recommend Coco Loco both as an art and B&B experience - pura vida!

Visited December 2011
Helpful?
1 Thank Knobwab
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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