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“A true breath of fresh air” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hotel Kokoro Arenal

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Hotel Kokoro Arenal
1 review
“A true breath of fresh air”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 31, 2013

Visited with family and lucky to have found this gem near Arenal Volcano. Deeply immersed in the authentic wildlife that Costa Rica has to offer, Kokoro was rich in both fauna and flora... how nice it is to hear the night sounds while soaking in the hot springs and to see the songbirds flying about while eating a tasty fruit plate on the breakfast patio. There is also a relaxing community pool, hammock, and spa area for more opportunities to completely de-stress.

The rooms were spacious and uniquely decorated. Beds were comfy and each place was equipped with a patio outlooking a wonderful view of the volcano. We were able to get great pictures of some interesting looking flowers and of a brilliant toucan calling for its mate. And of the volcano of course, bold and majestic, smoking away every so often.

The service was nothing short of outstanding. Felico, David, and the rest of the staff really went out of their way to make the experience the best it could be. Shared a beer, answered our many questions about the Costa Rican culture, and recommended the best places to explore for the remainder of our trip... everyone was genuinely friendly and happy to be there.

Definitely one of the best highlights on our CR trip.. a true breath of fresh air.

  • Stayed March 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank kmonies
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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661 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (90)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Turlock, California
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 29, 2013

Everyone really nice and helpful. Good breakfast, cute bungalows. DId not eat dinner there so cannot comment on that but the grounds are beautiful. Outside of town so you have to take a taxi into town but no biggie. I would have given a 5 but no bar - ha ha!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MgQuig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Willard, Missouri, United States
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 26, 2013

This was our first family vacation ever and our entire family LOVED our experience at Kororo Arenal! Our daughter loved it so much she wanted to stay. She said she could work there with Fernando and the rest of the staff. The villas are close enough to enjoy the night life and adventure's of LaFortuna and the volcano, yet secluded enough to relax at the end of a busy day. The personal service is amazing and the food is fantastic! The second half of our week was spent at an all-inclusive resort near Liberia and did not even compare to the beauty and fun of Kokoro.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Julie K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 21, 2013

If you remember and appreciate the concept of 'customer service' and realize that the hotel staff is crucial to a memorable experience, then Kokoro is the place for you! Felico and Fernando, the duo that runs this place, are two of the friendliest and most helpful staff you will ever encounter in your travels. The place is a virtual paradise of plants, birds, and serenity. If you want a unique and wonderful experience, check in with Felico and Fernando at Kokoro! You get a tour of the place at checkin, the food is great and the atmosphere is friendly and inviting. We were there for three wonderful nights before moving on to a nightmare experience at occidental allegro papaguyo (also reviewed on this site). Relaxing getaway...even if you never get to see the top of the volcano due to clouds :-(

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Nancy W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
19 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 21, 2013

I would skip the water park in Arenal in favor of the hotel's hot springs. The guest rooms were the best of the five places we stayed in in Costa Rica. Great walk-in shower! Amanda, Tod and Fernando were helpful throughout our stay and we felt very much "at home" because of their friendly hospitality and attention to requests that we made. Would definitely stay here again. Especially if the volcano was not covered by fog.

Room Tip: The king size bed was very welcome after hiking, zip-lining,etc.
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank DON_2013_CR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ottawa
Level Contributor
13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 19, 2013

We stayed at the Kokoro Hotel for 4 nights in mid-January 2013 and really enjoyed our stay. We used this as our base camp while we did day-trips in the Arenal and La Fortuna area. It is a relaxing, quiet, informal, family-run hotel with single and town-house style cabins, nice gardens and forest walks on the grounds, a pool, hot-springs pools, an outdoor lounge area, and a nice outdoor dining room. Tree-house style accommodations were under construction while we were there. Housekeeping was very good.

Our accommodation was clean, functional, roomy, and quiet (cabin #7). The use of beautiful wood everywhere makes it cozy and just makes one feel at ease. Buffet breakfasts, and sit-down dinners were quite good. Some might find the selection a bit limited, but the food was good and well prepared. We were fortunate to have Anita, one of the owners, put on a special sea food meal one night. I really enjoyed the breakfasts - a great mix of local food (ah ... the fruit!) and typically Canadian/American fare (including maple syrup). The staff even made lunch for us on a day when we had to leave early on a day trip. The staff were unwaveringly friendly, helpful, and conscientious. Many thanks to Felico, Fernando, Michael, Todd, Amanda, and to Felico's parents, and owners of Kokoro: David and Anita.

Tourists to Costa Rica obviously want to take advantage of hot springs, obviously. Visitors to Kokoro might be a bit disappointed. We enjoyed the unpretentious pools (3) which are only open in the evenings. They are filled with fresh hot spring water each evening, but the water coloured brown with sediment (not dirty, just coloured). One follows a lighted stone path to the pools which are set in a quiet garden area of the grounds. Very relaxing, but perhaps too informal for some. I personally hope they don't change these. They fit the atmosphere just nicely. So, my rating on the "spa" is a bit misleading. BTW, the Tabacon Spa and Hot Springs is a short 5 minute drive from Kokoro for those who want to splurge on that activity.

The swimming pool is quite nice, and big. The shallow end starts off very shallow (< 2'), and it deepens to about 6' or 7' at the far end near the water fall.

The staff arranged most of our day trips, including canyoning, waterfalls, spelunking, and hiking. They were very helpful with directions to attractions and restaurants, and in providing directions to our next destination. All of our trips were a great success! Thanks to the staff for recommendations. The staff are bilingual (Spanish, English), and some cases trilingual (add Mandarin)!

If you are looking for comfortable, quiet, pleasant accommodations, and a relaxing environment after a day of hiking, this is the spot. It is about a 10 minute drive north of La Fortuna, so there isn't really anything close by to which you can walk, with the exception of great views of the volcano just up the main road. We kicked back with drinks on the pool patio, and on our cabin porch in the afternoon and evening sun after our daily outings. That was just perfect!

If you're looking for pampered, formal, impersonal, luxurious 4* or 5* accommodations this is probably not the spot for you. The Kokoro is a more personal place, and more down-to-earth, which is quite appropriate for this ecologically sensitive country. We would definitely stay here again if visiting the Arenal area.

My only recommendation to the staff would be to include some Costa Rican music in the selection of mood music in the lounge area.

Room Tip: I don't think you can get a "bad" room here, but we loved cabin 7. King bed and singl...
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank sunsnosailski
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Beaufort, North Carolina, United States
Level Contributor
50 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 19, 2013

This is one of the better places we stayed when on our excursion across Costa Rica. We had quite the worldwin getting to this locations and arrived well before our check in time. They were sympathetic to our situation and allowed us to check in early and get sleep. The grounds were lush and beautiful with an array of different types of birds. The rooms were spacious and the bathroom was very roomy. The beds were the most comfortable out of the whole trip. Having wifi was esscential for our friends who were with us since they needed to be connected in some way to work. For me, it was just an added bonus to connect to my family from time to time. The breakfast the first day was very plentiful, but the second day was lacking to the point where they barely had food to feed us. One of the attendents at the dinning room saw that there was no food left at the buffett but did not do a thing...just kept talking to other guests even though he clearly saw that we were confused. That was a disappointment. Also, they were building 3 more cabins next to ours, so it became a bit noisy, but nothing we couldn't handle. They had their own hot springs there which was nice. The location is great. We only got to see the volcano for maybe 3 hours before it was hidden by low stratus. But I can imagine on a nice sunny morning, the views much be amazing. With all this said, we really enjoyed our stay. We would definitely come back again...just make sure to provide enough food for all your guests.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Longano
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Kokoro Arenal

Property: Hotel Kokoro Arenal
Address: 500m oeste de la Quebrada la Palma | 7km Northwest, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park 4000, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#16 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#25 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Kokoro Arenal 3.5*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Surrounded by lush tropical rainforest of the northern hills of Costa Rica, Hotel Kokoro Arenal is the perfect hideaway retreat blessed with untouched flora and fauna and a panoramic setting overlooking the majestic volcano of Arenal. At Kokoro Arenal, each of our carefully designed eco-villas offers a stay in a cozy family oriented style, with charm, and a service approach prepared in a joyful, attentive, and sustainable way. The lodging grounds also invite you to dip into the hill-top swimming pool, tropical hut with hammock, and explore our tucked away rainforest trails. With our Kokoro ‘heartfelt’ ways, we aim to revitalize your senses and share with you a vibrant experience in the Costa Rican tropics. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kokoro Arenal Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Resort Kokoro Arenal
Hotel Kokoro Arenal Costa Rica/Arenal Volcano National Park

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