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“Good area but very poor rooms”
Review of Selva Verde Lodge

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Selva Verde Lodge
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Sarapiqui
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed January 22, 2013

On the plus side you see a lot of birds. On the minus side the rooms are awful. The ones near reception have no AC and the ones further away (on the other side of the road) are supposed to have AC but it does not work so it is impossible to sleep at night in the sweltering heat. The rooms are also very dirty with bugs squashed on the walls since who knows how many guests ago. The restaurant is a pizzeria which serves very poorly prepared food.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank JamesXXI
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 20, 2013

My sister and I were traveling with my parents and when we heard we would be staying at a rain forest nature preserve we thought it would be in the middle of nowhere, not on a busy road. The noise of big trucks lumbering by with their noisy brakes was a bit of a distraction at first and I was there two days before I realized that the howler monkeys made almost as much noise in the early mornings as the traffic. I'd much rather hear the monkeys and frogs (all those tiny frogs sure make a lot of noise for their size) Not nearly as many bugs as I had expected (being a jungle) but the local spiders were actually quite facinating and beautiful. I loved seeing all the different kinds of birds too. The humidity is fierce but the river is cool and runs right by the lodge making it easy to cool off. Wish I'd had more time to explore the primary forest across the river.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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1  Thank Frankie E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 15, 2013

We stayed 3 nights at Selva Verde Lodge, and really enjoyed ourselves.

Staff: Very friendly and helpful! Everyone with whom we interacted was so nice: the front desk, housekeeping, the restaurants, and the guide for the night jungle tour (be sure to bring a flashlight for the night hike into the primary rainforest - it is great!). The front desk was very helpful in arranging tours (rafting, ziplining) with Aventuras del Sarapiqui (though you can also just contact them directly) and transportation on to La Fortuna.

Rooms: The rooms are certainly not posh, but that isn't why you are staying here, right? They are spacious, though, and I found the beds to be reasonably comfortable. There was a slight mildewy smell in some of the pillows, etc., but I think it is hard to avoid that in such a damp environment. There are comfortable chairs and hammocks outside each room for relaxing, too.

We were in a cluster of four rooms down by the river (the 38-41 group), and the rooms felt secluded and peaceful. HOWEVER, this is VERY VERY dependent on the people staying around you. The River Lodge rooms are not climate-controlled, and just have a fan, plus half of the windows are PERMANENTLY open (in other words, there is a screen, but no glass). We had a large family group around us, which was very polite and hushed, but I could see a rowdy group hurting someone's enjoyment of the peace and quiet. Also, I would avoid rooms 46-53. We started off there, and asked to be moved immediately. They are closer to the pool and dining room, but you can hear the road noise quite clearly.

Restaurant: Breakfast was good if a bit repetitive, though we did get tamales for the Christmas season! For lunch, you are stuck with the uninspiring buffet. For dinner, the La Terrazza restaurant is good (but pricey), and definitely worth reserving a table. There are great views of the river and the bird life, both upstairs and downstairs. There is NO real food that can be purchased in the gift shop (just ice cream), so if you are like us, and don't have a car, be sure to stock up on some non-perishable snacks before arriving at Selva Verde. There is a soda about 1/2-3/4 mile up the road, but that is about it for other options (and the road isn't so great for walking). The lack of dining variety is the main reason I have given 4 stars, fwiw.

Facilities: The pool is nice, and there are howler monkeys sometimes hanging around, which is fun (they also like to congregate by the parking lot). The trails are great, and you can see tons of wildlife (mainly birds and frogs, of course). You really feel like you are in the rainforest at Selva Verde! There are covered walkways between all of the buildings if you want to stay dry when you aren't tramping around, too.

We would stay there again, for a taste of the CR wildlife and a retreat from busyness.

Room Tip: Stay away from the rooms by the road - numbers 46-53.
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank MechTeach
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 9, 2013

I loved Selva Verde despite endless rainfalls, very muddy trails and never dried up clothes. Every morning while having breakfast we enjoyed watching groups of toucans, aracaris, oropendulas and other birds right in front of us and it was really magical.

Our river lodge was good, clean and very spacy. Of course it is not brand new, but we didn't care because we came for birds and jungles but not for examining the room. The food was excellent, either breakfast, lunch or dinner. Dinner was provided in the Italian restaurant just beside the river and the cuisine was truly Italian, amazing.

There are several feeding platforms in the property and if you get up early and do some relaxing self-guided walk around before the breakfast you will definitely see a lot of birds and other awesome wildlife.

For drying our clothes we just followed some wisdom recommendations: after hand laundering, just put on ourselves. It got dry shortly! We did guided birds watching tour, naturalist walk and chocolate tour. Each had its own highlights and remarkable points. The only thing I regret is that we had only 3 nights there... and I hope to come back once again!!!

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank chicharitas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 3, 2013

It was our best decision in 2012 to stay 13 days in Selva Verde Lodge. We had a very spacious room near Sarapiqui River. From the hammock on the terrace we could see cute squirrels and colorful small birds and hear the call of the howler monkeys.
We had full board and enjoyed the fresh food every day with a big variety of salads, fruits, fish, chicken, beef. (I think I put on weight as I could not resist temptation to try all the delicious dishes!)
Every day came new groups of students from other countries and a lot of photographers. They were busy all the day. The feeders have been visited by many- many different birds but you could make pictures of wildlife not only at the feeders - in the big garden you could see a lot of frogs, butterflies as well
The staff was very friendly and helpful. We are happy that we have stayed there. During our stay we had the honor to meet Mrs. Giovanna Holbrook, the founder of this wonderful place.
We are sure - we'll visit Selva Verde Lodge again.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank kolja55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 28, 2012

Well, that is why I came to CR. 2 nights and I could have easily done one or two more here. I did the Ducky 2-man kayak in the Sarapiqui river and it was a blast. Do not let the juvenile sounding term Ducky Ride fool you. This was exciting class II and III rapids. Well, the class III were exciting to me. No a/c but it was not needed. Big screened windows. Room and bathroom were clean. Breakfast was CR typical, which I always enjoyed. Outstanding bird viewing area from the dining room deck. Dinner one night had a really greasy chicken dish that was the only bad part of any meal for 19 days in CR. Cold beer and good mixed drinks in bar. Front desk, bartenders, guides were all wonderful. Walter had the rear seat on the kayak and he was so much fun and completely safe and knowledgeable. Thanks, Walter!

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled solo
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1  Thank ramorristoo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 20, 2012

This property is really beautiful, with a nice restaurant and bar, comfortable rooms. The most outstanding feature for me was the balcony on the second floor of the restaurant with a long bench and table to photograph birds and other wildlife in an area they've prepared with flowering plants and bunches of bananas for encouragement. The river runs right past the dining area also. The only drawback is the proximity to a busy highway at the front of the property; otherwise, you'd think you were truly in the middle of the forest. Rooms are on pilings, connected by covered walkways, and a hanging bridge over the river leads to forest trails. Whitewater rafting is available right down the road, and your trip can be arranged to finish near your rooms. Well worth the experience!

  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with friends
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2  Thank Royan17200
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Selva Verde Lodge

Address: | 9 Kms from Puerto Viejo de Sarapiqui, 553069, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Heredia > Sarapiqui
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Ski-In / Ski-Out Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Hotels in Sarapiqui
Price Range: $114 - $149 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Selva Verde Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 58
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Selva Verde is more than a lodge and more than a rainforest reserve. It is your gateway into a magical world of towering Almendro trees, Mantled Howler Monkeys, and Keel Billed Toucans. Immerse yourself in tropical nature as you hike through deep green forest or reflect quietly in a comfortable hammock. Discover something new as you encounter Selva Verde's amazing wildlife and vibrant people. Rekindle your sense of wonder and experience the out-of-the-ordinary. Experience Selva Verde! Located just 2 hours from San Jose, Selva Verde provides easy access to the wonders of the rainforest. For over 30 years, we have been a haven for nature enthusiasts from around the world. Our abundant biodiversity, comfortable rainforest lodge, and exciting activities are ideal for adventure seekers, bird and wildlife watchers, students, and families. Come explore Selva Verde's 500 acres of vibrant tropical nature in the heart of Costa Rica's Sarapiqui Canton. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Selva Verde Hotel Sarapiqui
Selva Verde Lodge Costa Rica/Sarapiqui

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