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Arenal Hostel Resort
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed February 11, 2014

The Arenal Hostel Resort was a decent place to spend a few nights while in La Fortuna. The biggest problem is the town itself. La Fortuna caters to the tourist, but only during the day and only for a price. If you have a car to yourself, you'll have access to a few places, but everything costs $$$ so while the hostel itself is cheap, excursions, going out, and travel are cost prohibitive. The hostel featured a relaxing courtyard, 24 hour security, and a nice sized room. The hot water was hit-or-miss in the shower, but the staff was friendly and accommodating.

Room Tip: There is a store out the back with reasonable prices on amenities.
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Thank millertime125
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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294 - 300 of 644 reviews

Reviewed February 3, 2014

Arenal Hostel Resort is a neat, clean hotel and you'll probably have a good stay here but don't mistake it for a hostel. There are nice facilities: poolside bar, hammocks, good reception on wi-fi and reasonable dorms. Beds were comfortable. We rated it three stars because its less like a hostel and more impersonal like a hotel.

Having dorms does not make a hostel: it has to have atmosphere with a good mix of travelers, staff fanatical with travelling and making you feel at home and some sort of travelling community. Arenal Hostel Resort doesn't have these things.

We've been travelling for 6 months throughout South and Central America and had the misfortune to be sick after arrival here, but the rating is given to how we were handled during the stay.

Our welcome was very sterile with a lot of paying in advance and no real personality from the staff. Don't assume you'll be near each other when you're travelling as a couple or a group.

When we fell sick we asked to change rooms to a private. We were charged $58 (full fare, upfront) and were told we were unable to stay in the rooms between checkout and check in without a fee being charged.

These kind of issues are small and mindless and probably wont influence your decision to stay at this hostel but for long term travelers penny pinching management always take away from a night in a good hostel regardless of how great the facilities are.

We hope Arenal Hostel Resort can find some compassion in their wallets in future.

  • Stayed: February 2014, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank RoandPj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 31, 2014

I am currently here. The staff are great. Well, all of them exempt the one bartender, who is more focused on watching music videos than helping. But John is awesome, as is Jennifer. I have bugged them so many times int he past couple days. They have accommodated me well. I originally booked for a dorm room, but then while travelling here, I decided that I wanted a private room instead. The only one they had available my first night was beside the bar and the loud music. So Jennifer said that my second night they will move me to another room.....room #105. Well, there was no hot water for the first 2 nights I was there. Finally on the 3rd night (after telling them 3 times) I did. Then sometime during the day before my 3rd night my A/C stopped working, the breaker blew. I ran into John and he fixed it. I was sitting at the bar waiting for food, which was taking a while because the cook went to the supermarket, I went back to my room to wait, and the AC was off again. I went to the front to tell John again, he wasn't there, so I went to the bar to tell the bartender, and he said something that someone is coming while looking towards reception. No one was coming. I went to reception to tell John, he wasn't there, and Jennifer was helping someone. I looked back at the bar and the bartender is sitting there watching music videos. A few minutes later he knocked on my door and asked if it was working. Nope, I told him that the breaker is blown. And he went and turned it on. I am going to Monteverde for the day and one night (staying in their sister hostel resort there) hope that is much better (they allowed me to transfer one of my nights here to there), and when I come back here, the following day, I'm gonna tell them I don't want room 105 again. The room sucks. The garden is nice and cozy and comforting. All the staff I've dealt with are awesome (except that bartender, who doesn't seem to want to do any work). But kudos to John and Jennifer!!!!!

Stayed: January 2014, traveled solo
1  Thank rteyistoenr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2014

This is the best hostel I've ever stayed in! Accommodations are great, and Jessie and Jenny were wonderful about arranging tours around La Fortuna. I had a private room for about $45/night, which had a fridge, air conditioning, and cable TV. Jessie was also great about organizing social events in the hostel - I came on a Saturday and we had a karaoke party that he led by the pool. It was a wonderful place to meet people during my first stop in CR!

The only con was the lack of hot water - there didn't seem to be any hot water in the showers. One other tip: do NOT buy tickets to any of the hot springs - there is a free outdoor hot spring right next to them - just ask a taxi driver to take you to them!

Room Tip: Request a room away from the bar, as it is noisy at night and music does not quiet down until after...
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Stayed: January 2014, traveled solo
Thank jillith2217
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 23, 2014

We stayed there in january 17-21 and we had a good time there. Friendly staff and very helpful! Good location! It is a nice hostel. It feels like a family with the mama cook comes to you to tell you that you need to eat! We have a great time thanks to jennifer, Jesse and John!

Cons: the pool was cold.

Room Tip: There is music until 10:00pm eo try to don't take a room in front of the bar. Other thant hat, r...
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  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled with family
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Thank Audrey L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 11, 2014 via mobile

Stayed in 7 hostels on my vacation and this one was my favorite! I went on three of their free excursions (LA Fortuna Waterfall, Hot Springs and LA Fortuna tour/rope swing) and each one was more amazing than the last. The place was beautiful and well kept. The owner was very personable and hung out with the guests at the bar. Had a blast playing jenga with him and the other travelers.

They offer breakfast for $5 if you buy the ticket the night before, $6 that day. Just pay the $5. Totally worth it.

Side note, if you are an early to bed person, request a room away from the bar. My room was the one right next to the bar and I could hear everything, but I was completely forewarned when I xhecked in and given a discount too. It wasn't a problem for me as I usually close the bar down.

Also, if you go on the waterfall excursion, bring $10 with you. The city charges that for maintenance and cleaning, but it is worth it.

  • Stayed: October 2013
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Thank DanScheulen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2014

its a hostel, we just wanted a place to crash and freshen up in the morning.

DO NOT buy the tickets to BALDI resort and spa that they sell there, the place is awful and expensive. Read reviews on on trip advisor before you go or purchase any tickets as they are non-refundable!! Use the local hot springs for free and BYO food and drink if you want, its right by Tabacon resort and it 100% natural

the hostel was nice looking and complementary welcome drink was nice. A dribble of water pressure in the morning made it impossible to bathe, and i really mean dribble! No towels in room, no bar soap. air conditioning is included, beds are comfortable.

to stay was $58 per night plus $6 per person breakfast buffet, $7 if you purchase day of, ( basically $ 70 per night with breakfast for 2 people) which we were told was american and costa rican and it had bacon, eggs, sausage, gallo pinto etc.. which we were excited and looking forward to.
what it really was was gallo pinto (rica and beans), scrambled eggs, and ham but not decent ham, fried deli sliced processed ham that was honestly the worst ham i tasted in my life. thats it. no bacon or sausage. We think it would be better to find a real breakfast in town or skip breakfast altogether and find a nice place for lunch

Overall, we would not stay here again. Don't buy any tickets through them for anything or take any advice from them you will be disappointed you wasted your time and money on your short stay to costa rica.

  • Stayed: January 2014, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank kitchenergirl2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arenal Hostel Resort

Address: Sobre Carretera Principal #142 | South side of catholic church, Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos 21007, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 74 Specialty Lodging in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range: $14 - $132 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Arenal Hostel Resort 2.5*
Number of rooms: 68
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Arenal Hostel Resort, besides standing out for our excellent location in La Fortuna, is a place that characterize for making the difference, where day by day we work as a team to provide our guests a unique experience in boarding and adventure. The charisma of our team members and their renowned assistance, is what makes Arenal Hostel Resort a place to come back. Arenal Hostel Resort was born with the idea of making a new concept in the area, where a good price and the quality of lodging, were the fundamental aspect that would identify us. As well as a point of meeting to make friends. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Arenal Hostel Resort Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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