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“Breathtaking Hotel Horrible Weather!”
Review of Peace Lodge

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Peace Lodge
Ranked #1 of 7 Hotels in Heredia
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 19, 2010

We left sunny Manual Antonio and headed to Poas, a four hour drive away, but totally different weather. The hotel is located on a Mountain near the Poas Volcano, and as we approached the hotel, it became colder and very wet- we went from shorts and a tee shirt to long pants, sneakers, sweater and rainslicker.

The Hotel is nothing short of stunning- we had a deluxe room, fairly reasonably priced, that had a cascading waterfall, two spring showers, and a jacuzzi tub in the bathroom and on the deck. You could easily fit 3 King Size Beds in the bathroom!! Minor problem with the bathroom though, is that the water was only luke warm, so I couldn't even enjoy my jacuzzi bath. However, there was also a beautiful fireplace in the bedroom, where I sat and read for awhile very cozy!

The hotel has a waterfall garden to view (we were rained out and couldn't see it) and amazing wildlife- some roam free and some are caged off for safety- birds, monkeys, cougars, snakes, butterflies etc. The kids (ages 6 and 9) really enjoyed this, and my six year old got to feed a toucan!

The breakfast buffet was very good- large assortment of hot and cold dishes, the lunch was also buffet style, not as good, and dinner was in a beautiful restaurant on-site, and had an a nice la carte menu.

I would not go back to the hotel again, mostly because the weather was horrible (and that was the dry season), but I am not sorry we went once to see the area. If you go, do not stay more than one night.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled with family
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Thank tennisleg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed February 17, 2010

Peace lodge and LaPaz Waterfall gardens are absolutely wonderful! We loved every bit of our time here & it was our favorite destination this time around (3rd holiday in Costa Rica). LaPaz waterfall gardens as an attraction is great to visit, but you're really not getting the full effect and benefit if you're not staying on site at the Peace lodge. The ability to explore at your leisure vs. during a few hour window as an excursion from elsewhere makes a huge difference.

The deluxe rooms in Peace lodge are incredible! I'm guessing our room/bathroom was somewhere between 800-1000 sq/ft in size (quite large) with the incredible bathroom about 1/2 that total space (you need a lot of room to put a full waterfall, two showers, large double sink area and seperate toilet into a bathroom and still leave plenty of space to spare!). The balcony is also over-sized with tropical plants, a humming bird feeder which does brisk business, a whirlpool tub, a full size hammock, and a table and chairs with room to spare. Bugs seem quite uncommon compared to other areas of Costa Rica we've visited.

My husband and I were traveling with our 5 year old daughter and we all loved it here. A location like this is ideal for families with little ones, as you can take your time to see the various attractions in the gardens, the lovely rain forests and the waterfalls while still being close enough to your room for those various things little kids always seem to need (a nap, a new shirt, a snack, bathroom, different toy, etc.)

The rooms are set higher up the hill than the attractions, so you have a lovely view of the jungle/forest valley and the garden buildings below. Our time here was sunny and clear each day with a low mist rolling in each early evening about 5pm or so. The rooms are spacious and beautiful with many extra creature comforts not often found in Costa Rican resorts. One great feature was a selection of DVD's to borrow which had a nice offering of kids movies. We used these in the evenings (Benji is now a favorite we've had to buy since returning home..). The rooms also offer CD player's and hook ups for the Apple MP3 player. There are several pre-recorded selections of music on DVD available. I had brought my zune and portable speakers, so didn't use these but I thought the fact they had them and the variety of music to be quite nice. Also the gas fireplace was lovely and created a great cozy feeling in the evenings.

The many positives:

- The lovely, spacious, creature-comfort laden deluxe room
- The attractive warmed pool near the rooms (also has a waterfall feature)
- The closeness to the many attractions:
*Frog atrium (markers and guides show you where they are hiding so you can find them)
*Bird atrium
*Butterfly atrium (guides instruct on how to safely pick up the lovely butterflies)
*hummingbird feeding area (with am/pm hands-on feedings for guests)
*Snake enclosure
*Monkey enclosures
*big-cat enclosures (Friendly/social ocelots! Hand raised? See pictures..)
*FABULOUS hiking/walking trails in the rain forest and to waterfalls (despite only 2 of the 7 available due to the earthquake last year there is still much to see and the open falls are beautiful as well as the open trails through the rainforest)
- Lunch buffet available each day (pretty tasty - be sure to use the Lizano sauce! Yum)
- Tasty room service for breakfast and dinner served on the balcony overlooking the jungle valley.
- Wonderful, friendly, service-oriented staff
- Friendly & knowledgeable guides in the atrium areas.

The few negatives:

- Each room has surround sound, but unfortunately this can cause you to hear your neighbors music or movie depending on the volume they've set.
- Dinner restaurant is a bit disappointing for the price and limited selection. We much preferred the more local menu available at the other, lower restaurant which was open only for breakfast & lunch. The Upper restaurant is supposed to be more gourmet and high-end, which seems to preclude any type of local fare or variations thereof. We ended up getting room service on days 2 & 3 and it was much better.
- My husband thought the mattress was too hard, but I was fine with it - thought I'd mention this for those who might have the same issue as he did.

Potential negative for some - this entire place is built on the side of a steep hill in a valley. You will be going up and down a multitude of stairways the equivalent of several stories for each activity - getting to your room, to the restaurants, the attractions, to the hikes (which also have much walking up and down steps and somewhat steep trails).
We are not super sporty - more of the lazy, urban type but we found the multitude of stairs to be fine and manageable without problems. However, someone with arthritis, mobility limitations, etc. may have a very challenging time with this.

This is an incredible destination in Costa Rica and now one of my very favorites. We will absolutely return on future visits and we highly recommend it to families with kids of all ages (except maybe infants, as the stairs may be difficult when carrying a baby), and others who value nature related experiences and unique inns.

The previous reviewer who complained about the service and the fact that not all waterfalls are accessible right now seems to have either unrealistic expectations for travel abroad, didn't do her research, didn't know how to use the exterior sign requesting room cleaning (they are very respectful of NOT entering if the "go away" sign is on display) or some other reason for their unhappy visit. We found the service excellent (as did others we spoke with while there) and the website clearly informs all that not all waterfalls are accessible while they continue to repair after the severe damaged caused by the quake last year. Don't let the rare negative review steer you away from this gem! I do not hesitate to recommend this great spot to all and we will absolutely visit again on our future holidays to Costa Rica.

  • Stayed: February 2010, traveled with family
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2  Thank KCSinSFBay
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 1, 2010

I can't tell you how amazing this resort is. We were at another resort for our 25th anniversary and met a couple that was checking out, and on there way to this resort. They were telling us about it,. So, we decided to also check out and go to this resort. It was the best resort out of the three we stayed at. It included the park and trails. And fishing in the swimming pool was really cool. It would be the best place to go for any honeymoon or anniversary. We will go back again soon.

  • Stayed: December 2008, traveled as a couple
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Thank Pooh_Bear_1Florida
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2010

super romantic and luxeryus!!!! Great for a 2-3 day stay, not more. We stayed 2 days feeding the humming birds.and walking near the beautiful waterfalls and views. If your looking for romance this is the place!!! Bring warm clothes, theres a fire place in your room!!!

  • Stayed: May 2007, traveled as a couple
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Thank kbigo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 27, 2010

The price is not worth the quality of the hotel. Rooms and gardens are wonderful, but that's it! In the period me and my boyfriend were there the main waterfall was unaccessible, the common jacuzzi outside was not working, nobody came to clean the room during the two days we were there, neither to change towel (we had this service in EVERY other place in costa rica, for much much lower prices!). I had to clean the room and I was supposed to be on holiday. The idea of such a resort is cool, but the management is really scarse.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank lisamar78
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 26, 2010

My boyfriend and i stayed here for 1 night, which was the perfect amount of time for us. Even the hotel recommends you not stay long. It's the main attraction in the area along with a coffee plantation tour (i heard good things from other guests). The rooms are amazing. We booked a basic room that turned out to be anything but basic. From the 4-poster bed to the stone fireplace to the secluded private whirpool it was totally worth the price. The staff is incredibly attentive and looking to make your stay a great one. The grounds are beautiful and easily take a full day to tour. There is still some damage from the earthquake (partially closed trails, big trout lake closed) but they have it almost up to pre-earthquake levels. The only complaint we had is the main restaurant. The service was great and the dining room is quite nice, but the food does not deserve to be part of the Peace Lodge.
One other thing- Only rent large 4x4 vehicles, worth the $ and the only way you can get from the Peach Lodge to Arenal after the earthquake damaged the road.

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jayktoronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 11, 2010

Dont go here for any other reason other than the rooms. The entire place has a very disney world/zoo like feel, but the incredible rooms/tubs/shower made up for everything. Would go back.

  • Stayed: February 2008, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jolispapillons
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Peace Lodge

Address: Poas | Vara Blanca, La Paz Waterfalls Gardens, Heredia 40101, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Heredia > Heredia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 Hotels in Heredia
Price Range: $319 - $717 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Peace Lodge 4*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located less than one hour from the San Jose (Juan Santamaria) Airport, the Peace Lodge is the perfect place to begin or end your vacation. You don't need to spend your first or last day in a city hotel. Please come spend them in the rain and cloud forest with us and still be close to the airport. We are also only 20 minutes from the Poas Volcano, another "must see" attraction in Costa Rica. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Peace Hotel Heredia
Peace Lodge Costa Rica/Heredia

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