We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Bare bone shack in the jungle”

Best prices for -
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
Hotel Shawandha Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
MPLS
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Bare bone shack in the jungle”
Reviewed October 31, 2011

We were very disappointed in the Shawandha. We thought this was going to be a little more comfortable. Here are the facts.

1. After a 5 hour bus ride from San Jose, we arrive to the hotel and were hungry. They did not offer anything to eat during the day and had to wait till 6:00 to get food. They did not have any ice on the property - you had to hike down the road to a small convience store for anything to drink.
2. The food was okay - barebone breakfast - fruit and an egg. The dinner menu was small and took 3 times to cook our steaks so they were not bloody.The food was okay- not great. I am not that picky - I can live on burgers and pizza even.The dinner atmosphere was nice outside with candles.
3. Nice plants and a pretty outdoor environment and pool area.
4. Rooms are as bare bone as you could imagine. Walk into a tiny bungalow wih one bed a small shelf and an entable with one little lamp. No drawers or shelfs to put clothes in - no hooks to hang anything - just a small area in the bathroom with a rod and 4 hangers. you need to dress from your suitcses on the floor as there was not room put things away. Bed was hard and only had a sheet and an old musty thin bedspread. There was no air - just an old rickety ceiling fan. Was either cold or hot in the rooms due to the high humidity and all of the rain. Room was always damp feeling.
5. No windows - just screens with wood slats. So no privacy at all - the sound travels and could hear everything from the bungalows nearby. And the monkeys were lound waking you up with their screams all night long.
6 The bathroom has steep tile stairs and were slippery and dangerous - was always wet feeling because of the humidity. No shower curtain even in the shower and is next to the toilet. Water everywhere - chincy little bath towels. and only one small spot light working from the ceiing so always dark in the bathroom. My favorite part of the bathroom was when the last day we had an early morning pick up and the shower was only dispensing hot burning water, then ice cold and then just stopped working at all. Of course this happend when I had a full head of shampoo and could not rince it out.
7. It raind 20 hours a day so the fact that this place did not offer anything - no activities, no TV, not even a deck of cards, made it incredibly boring. If the weather was better - the beach and pool would have made the days more enjoyable - but know if you do go there in the rainy season - bring a lot of books, because there is literally nothing to do.
8. The best part about the Shawandha was leaving and going on our amazing white water rafting tour at the pacquare river on our way back to San Jose. The holiday inn airport hotel was like staying a the TAJ MAHAL after our experience at the Shwandha. We are not people that typically pay for great rooms - usually only 3 star and never had experienced such a poor accomodation.

USA Traveller

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank M T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

473 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    261
    159
    32
    15
    6
See reviews for
102
263
19
3
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (40)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Montreal, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed October 14, 2011

What a piece of paradise! We came from Montreal to attend our son's destination wedding and had the majority of guests with us in this tropical oasis before re-locating to the wedding hotel. The bungalows were spaced perfectly for privacy yet just steps away to visit others. Clean, cool (loved not having a/c-the ceiling fans were perfect!) and each one unique. Personally, my husband & I would have liked more hooks to put our things on, but that is so minor compared to what this lodge offered. A great open lounge area; a breathtaking pool area that brought the wedding party back from another location just to capture the tropical feel; comfortable and accommodating restaurant that served great freshly-cooked breakfast (included) during our 6-day stay; and delicious evening dining! They served our group of 16-20 one evening with great food, music and drinks. In keeping with the eco theme for Costa Rica, they sometimes would close the water to conserve, which didn't inconvenience us except for one late afternoon when we returned from ziplining and we were preparing to go to our son's wedding rehearsal/dinner and off goes the water during my shower! Well, the admin was quick to put it back as soon as my husband informed them of my dilemma.
The beach area was a small walk across the road from the lodge through more tropical grounds and when it opened up as we approached the ocean, it was simply awesome! Most of our group was in their early 30's with some of us in our 50's and it was just perfect for us. We would recommend this lodge over and over again to anyone who wants a quiet and real taste of Costa Rica. The Howler Monkeys (which is why I give it a 4 out of 5 for sleep quality...man those monkeys are LOUD and scary); foliage and plants at Shawandha Lodge will forever leave an imprint on our memories of this trip!!

Room Tip: all the bungalows were accommodating according to your needs of space.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank momzoldan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chattanooga, TN
Level 3 Contributor
16 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed October 14, 2011

We checked into Hotel Shawandha after the vacation house we rented for two weeks was broken into and $3500 worth of stuff was stolen in addition to passports. This was definitely a great place to be after all that. It is extremely quiet, with a sort of "jungle like" feel when you walk in. The only hitch was that there was a wedding reception that started the first night we were there that was extremely loud, but they did let us know ahead of time that that would be the case. The restaurant serves breakfast (which is included with the price of the bungalow) and serves fresh bread, fruit, juice, coffee and eggs cooked to order. Very nice touch. We ate dinner there also one night which was quite decent and is an a la carte menu. The staff were so peaceful and sweet. The wifi wasn't working the second day we were there, and didn't get fixed for the remainder of our time, but they also have an internet "bungalow" with a computer inside that is available for guests.

All in all, it was a very pleasant stay.

Room Tip: It seems that most of the bungalows are about the same
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank thebany
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Munich, Germany
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed September 19, 2011

Beautiful bungalows under old trees with helpful staff and excellent service.
You will awake with the howling monkeys next to your bungalows in the trees, see agutis searching around- and humming birds are flying round the restaurant.
Excellent breakfast with a large and sufficient selection of fruits, eggs, bread and coffee.
Near to the beaches and Puerto Viejo (5 minutes by car).

Room Tip: Nr 12 and 14 are for maximum 4 person and situated in the calm rear part
See more room tips
  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank kawe59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed August 29, 2011

This was EXACTLY what my new husband and I dreamed of for our honeymoon! We are not your average "tourists" but a well-traveled, fun but laid-back couple from Seattle who really love to experience the essence of the places we visit.

We wanted someplace romantic and quiet that felt like we were nestled away in the jungle but still close to the beach so we could swim and snorkel while having access to amazing food and local culture not too far away from shops and nightlife. (I know, not asking for much, he he) I can't get over how perfect shawandha was!

when we entered it felt like we were in Bali with a giant thatched roof tropical themed open air restaurant and receiving hall. It was beautiful and peaceful with sculptures and flowers. The entire grounds is set up like a polynesian village in the middle of the rainforest, but it's like your own mini-and semi-private rainforest. There were tall, lush trees and flowers everywhere! It is very natural and beautiful, not like the sparse and manicured lawns and "gardens" you see elsewhere. You take a beautifully lit, covered pathway to the trails that lead to each private jungle-bungalow or "jungalow" as we like to call them. Some are further apart than others but they all blend in naturally with the environment so you forget you even have neighbors. Plus, the amazing jungle symphony that surrounds you is enough to cover any human voices. We never even heard any of our neighbors the whole time we were there.

We LOVED the jungalow we had! At first you are excited about the lounge bed and hammock on your porch and then you see the giant bed (which is probably usually a great thing but since we were honeymooners we were sad that sometimes we slept through a whole night without even accidentaly grazing feet or hands, he he).
You think, where's the bathroom? then you open a door and you are dazzled by the most amazing mosaic tile decor that you've ever seen! A small twisty staircase takes you to a huge, open, tiled shower.

We loved that the windows in our jungalow were only covered by screen (with curtains of course). It let in all the amazing sounds of the jungle. At night we were lulled to sleep and saw amazing green fire-flies. (we were occassionally awakened by a howler monkey which I thought actually HOWLED but Nooooo, it sounded like a harley davidson was being started up outside our door. My husband, who's an actor, said that in old Hollywood some of the first "monster" sound effects were actually recordings of howler monkeys. I see why).

Since it was dusk when we got there I think the staff thought we'd eat and be off to bed but instead we asked how to get to the beach! Right across the street is a small path that leads you right to it in just minutes (bring a flashlight at night, although the staff might not reccommend night swimming or will look at you like your crazy...ok maybe we are just a little bit but it was SOOOOO worth it!). We made it out there in the dark and when we stepped onto the sand the view took our breath away. Pictures do NOT do it justice! The moon just happened to be full and we could see through the water right down to the sand at the bottom. During the day we found out there is a small barrier reef that surrounds this little oasis so you can actually snorkel while standing on your feet (and without the fear of open water that some people, like me, have). It was so peaceful there and not very populated at all. There were times when it was just us and others with a few people here and there. the jungle and palm trees actually hug the shore giving you an intimate tropical paradise feel. Howler monkeys and sloths line the trees along the path. Sometimes you have to look for them, other times the monkeys make themselves VERY obvious. You can tell when they howl or if you hear fruit dropping from the trees (make sure you don't stand directly below them or they might surprise you with something else).

we LOVE LOVE LOVED the staff! The were so accomodating and friendly!
the restaurant at Shawandah is wonderful! Sooooo romantic and great variety of dishes. My favorite was the fish. We also shared some great lobster and heart of palm salad, yum! but we like to explore so we tried every place along the road. SIDE NOTE: (my personal favorite thing to eat in all the world is the carribean style chicken at the little 3 table stand nearby. It is ran by a cool and friendly Argentinian woman, just ask for Jimmy's special chicken in sauce. I loved this so much that I would pay almost anything for the recipe...if any future travelers can find out for me how he does it you will have a new best friend for life!).

Shawanda staff can help you plan any excursion you desire right there at the front desk! they have access to the tour company in town and have great reccommendations.
We loved the jaguar sanctuary and walked to it (although riding a bike or taking a cab is reccomended in the heat). Then we walked to town (again, don't be silly like us. Take a cab). It is definitely a cool little town with lots of tourist shops but to be honest, we couldn't wait to get back to our little neighborhood at Shawanda! We were there a week and never felt the need to leave our little paradise, except to go to the beach and eat Jimmy's chicken of course:)

This is a small, cozy, paradise village for nature lovers. If you're afraid to see a live monkey or toucan outside your door or get easily spooked by natures other little creatures (be it butterflies, stick-bugs, fire-flies or ants) than go have a typical boring stay at a hilton or something. But if you want a true jungle paradise experience with charm and comfort (and a beautiful bathroom!) with amazing service and food and an ocean oasis steps away...then you can't miss staying at Shawanda! Our fantasy come to life :)

Room Tip: All rooms seem amazing!
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank kenagu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Alkmaar, The Netherlands
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 22, 2011

A part of paradise on earth. Wonderful place to stay, with nice bungalows, incredible surroundings and very friendly staff. Breakfasty with fresh fruit was delicious. Lots of things to see and do in the area. We just loved to relax while beeing there.
We saw monkeys and Toucans in the trees, while layog in the pool. Beach was a 3 minute walk.. really, i can recommend this hotel very much!

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank michiel_Gillesz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
j
1 review
Reviewed August 21, 2011

This place is amazing, you can sit by the pool with binoculars and watch monkeys, sloths and other critters in canopy. Excellent service and helpful staff.

  • Stayed July 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank j j
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
Travelers also viewed these Puerto Viejo de Talamanca hotels
4.6 mi away
Hotel Banana Azul
Hotel Banana Azul
#1 of 12 in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
1,452 reviews
1.4 mi away
Le Cameleon Boutique Hotel
2.2 mi away
Cariblue Beach & Jungle Resort
Cariblue Beach & Jungle Resort
#8 of 12 in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
1,019 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
2.1 mi away
Hotel La Costa de Papito
Hotel La Costa de Papito
#3 of 12 in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
674 reviews
3.1 mi away
Hotel Blue Conga
Hotel Blue Conga
#2 of 12 in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
639 reviews
1.7 mi away
Hotel Yare
Hotel Yare
#2 of 3 in Cocles
35 reviews
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Hotel Shawandha Lodge? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hotel Shawandha Lodge

Property: Hotel Shawandha Lodge
Address: Playa Chiquita, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca 7304, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
#6 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Hotel Shawandha Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 14
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com and Priceline so you can book your Hotel Shawandha Lodge reservations with confidence. We help millions of travelers each month to find the perfect hotel for both vacation and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Hotel Shawandha Puerto Viejo
Hotel Shawandha Lodge Costa Rica/Limon

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing