This is a complicated review because there is so much positive about this imaginative, creative, and beautiful lodge. (We stayed in the Beach Suite which was not exactly on the beach but a short walk through the forest/gardes away.) I truly understand why others gave this eco-resort a 4 or 5 rating. My rating of 3 does not tell the full story as the Treehouse lodge is a mixed bag; the positives are REALLY positive, but the negatives.....are tough. So, by all means go there; it is a special place in many ways, but I do believe that being forewarned about some of the drawbacks or challenges might make one's stay more enjoyable. So here goes:
1. Amazing paradisaical gardens.
2. Whimsical architecture is a WOW!. We had a Gaudi-inspired bathroom!
3. The beach out front is beautiful
4. Nice restaurants in walking distance
5. Enjoyed our horseback riding beach trip with Bruce from nearby Chiquita Beach Stables
6. The staff tries very hard to resolve any problems (of which there are a few....see below).
1. It rains....a lot. and when it does EVERYTHING gets wet/damp/mildewy inside and out. We were there in the alleged "dry" season, so I am not sure what it would be like in the "rainy" season. This fact made all of the problems below much more intense.
2. Neither of the "jacuzzis at our property worked properly. The inside one not at all and the outside one just never got to the right temperature. Again, no big deal if we weren't soaked through and through and dying for some warmth and relief.
3. To make matters worse, there was no hot water in the shower.
4. Fire ants in the outdoor hammocks made them unusable leaving us no place to sit when it rained, which it did....a lot....as I've mentioned.
5. The beach is beautiful....but unswimmable due to the proximity of the reef. You can get in thewater a bit by walking to the north a ways, but in order to actually "swim" you have to walk 500 meters to the south to the official Punta Uva "beach" (which has the benefit of a fresh water stream running into it (very refreshing when it is hot....not so refreshing when it is raining.)
6. It is Costa Rica, and sometimes things just don't happen when they are supposed to. Just ask for everything a half hour before you need it.
7. The staff told us we could call anytime if there was a problem, but the rain knocked out the phone system, so we were somewhat stranded.
8. The lighting was intense in our bathroom but non-existent in the living room, making it difficult to read or play games when it rained, since we could not sit on the hammocks.
8. The high price (which would have been reasonable if not for 1-7 above.
So that is the whole, complicated, story. I really hate to pan a place that has so many positives and which is really a very bold attempt to bring eco-tourism to a new level, but I know I would have appreciated a heads up about some of the issues, so go to the tree house lodge, by all means, but do so with your eyes wide open. And if you are lucky enough to get sunny skies probably none of the drawbacks listed above will even matter!!!!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The only tree house right on the beach of the southern Caribbean of Costa Rica. This is your best nature hotel and romantic hideaway. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Tree House Hotel Puerto Viejo
- Tree House Lodge Costa Rica/Limon