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“Paradise, the best vacation we have had”

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Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge
Ranked #3 of 12 Hotels in Golfito
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Montreal, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Paradise, the best vacation we have had”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 26, 2014

We travelled with our 2 teenage sons and we all had the best holiday. We were looking for something off the grid, authentic. We found it! Playa Nicuesa is nestled in the Rainforest surrounded by nature and wildlife. Arriving to Nicuesa (by boat only) is like arriving at Jurassic Park without the dinosaurs! Huge ferns, moss covered trees and vines, exotic flowers everywhere, lizards scurrying around, scarlet Macaws squawking from the trees, blue Morpho butterflies floating by, and the sounds of hundreds of frogs, crickets and other creatures. And the warm humid air. It felt like paradise and I have to say that we were awe struck. We snorkelled, kayaked in the mangroves with caimans, hiked through the jungle to the waterfalls, had a night excursion through the jungle... all with our amazing guide Jose who was extremely knowledgeable about the jungle and happy to share his information. We even planted 2 trees in the Rainforest. We left Costa Rica with much more than when we arrived. The food was delicious, fresh fruits and juices, fish (or chicken), vegetables. We certainly did not go hungry and it was nice to not have to eat the usual buffet food you are used to finding at a resort. The cabins were beautiful. We all loved the open shower! We also looked forward to hearing the howler monkeys 'howl' in the early hours of the morning. You felt like you were really in the jungle. We especially appreciated Nicuesa's commitment to being eco-friendly. I would highly recommend Playa Nicuesa and I can't wait until we can go back.
James & Laura, Montreal, Canada

  • Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Laura P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NicuesaLodge, Owner at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, responded to this review, May 19, 2014
Thank you both for your fantastic review of Playa Nicuesa! We're really happy that you and your sons enjoyed the best of our lodge, the rainforest and Golfo Dulce area. And we are especially pleased that you loved our eco-friendly way of life. From what you wrote we see that you understand the special beauty of our location and philosophy. Thank you for supporting sustainable tourism! We look forward to having you visit us again ... to see how the trees you planted have grown!
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252 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (60)
Date | Rating
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English first
Greenville, South Carolina
Level Contributor
30 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 14, 2014 via mobile

What a special place! If you want a vacation steeped in nature and authenticity, this is the spot for you. Our family spent a week here before Christmas. It's hard to say what was better: the rainforest setting or the waterfront location! An abundance of wildlife (both land and sea). Remote setting is really "away from it all".

Bungalows were comfortable and nicely decorated. Large, bright bathrooms. Better than glorified camping, but the outdoors does come in (keep your mosquito net closed!). This is the jungle, so everything will get damp. Fortunately, the lodge has a drying room for wet clothes, shoes, etc. The friendly, helpful staff made us feel like family. Everyone went out of their way to make us welcome and comfortable. Even our 90-year-old grandfather had a blast!

Fresh, local food everyday. Everything was very tasty and served in the lodge's beautiful dining room with views of the jungle and the water. The bar and the bartenders were a lot of fun. Fresh tropical cocktails!

Try as many activities as you can (we loved the waterfall hike, daily yoga, massage, food tours, zip lining and boat tours), but leave plenty of time for swimming off the dock in the calm water of the Golfo Dolce, relaxing on the beach, and exploring the jungle around the resort. Kayaks, fishing and snorkel equipment all available too! This review is overdue (we stayed December 2012), but we wanted to share our wonderful experience. This was everything we hoped for from a Costa Rica vacation. Thank you Playa Nicuesa!

Stayed December 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Beth S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NicuesaLodge, Owner at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, responded to this review, April 22, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a great review! We love hearing from our guests, no matter when you stayed with us. We're thrilled that you and your family -- and even your 90-year-old grandfather! -- had a magical time with us. Thank you for sharing with people how your experience was with us, and what your favorite activities were. We look forward to having you visit Costa Rica and Playa Nicuesa again!
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Villach, Austria
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 14, 2014

My experiences in Nicuesa Lodge belong to my best. The nature-orientated, really ecologically conducted lodge, the cozy accommodation, the home-made light and tasteful meals, the helpful, friendly and qualified stuff are the best you can imagine. And not only many species of birds, snakes, basilisks, frogs, insects, monkeys, racoons can be seen there, you can watch anytime the charming Coaties and the funny Scarlet Macaws. By night you can see a sky with myriades of stars without any light pollution, you can listen to the fascinating sounds of the rainforest, sometimes a giant tree braking down with a thunder halling through the rainforest. I never felt so near to nature than there. But most exciting was my face-to-face encounter with a Waleshark, the biggest fish, who followed our boat on a tour through the Golfo Dulce for more than one hour. Gustavo, one of the nice guides, went into the water to swim with the shark. The guided Waterfall-trail with José, hitting the fallen trees and clearing up our path with his machete, telling us where to put each step walking trough the flow and climbing the falls, representing us the plants and animals on the way, was another unforgettable adventure as well as the Mangrove-tour kayaking through the calm dreamlike landscape of the mouth of Rio Esquinas. Living in Nicuesa Lodge is like being in paradise.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank Elisabeth F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NicuesaLodge, Owner at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, responded to this review, April 22, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to write such a beautiful review, full of your favorite memories and wonderfully descriptive imagery. Your photos of the whale shark are top-notch! What an amazing experience! You are welcome back in our paradise anytime you want! :-)
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Boulder, Colorado
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed April 5, 2014

This past March marked my second trip to Nicuesa in the past two years, each time as part of a yoga retreat. I absolutely LOVE Nicuesa and can't wait to go back again! The lush jungle setting is both tranquil and adventurous; it is by far the most perfect setting for a yoga retreat and the large yoga deck overlooking the beautiful ocean is every yoga practitioner's dream come true! Even if yoga is not your thing, staying active is easy to do at Nicuesa, with activities such as kayaking, snorkeling, swimming, fishing, hiking, bird watching and chocolate making to name a few. You can venture out on your own or be led by one of the incredibly knowledgeable and friendly guides. If it's relaxation you're seeking, Nicuesa is the place - just grab one of the many hammocks or chairs and soak in the beauty of the jungle and ocean, or pamper yourself with an ocean-side massage. And the staff - so helpful, friendly and eager to assist with all smiles! The food is beyond delicious - fresh and healthy - and any dietary restrictions you may have are no problem for the folks at Nicuesa - just let them know your needs and they will be met! As it relates to the food, one of my favorite things is the "family style" dinners. All of the guests are seated together at one large table in the main lodge for dinner every night. This really provides the opportunity to get to know the other guests, which I found very enjoyable. The rooms are very nice and comfortable; I love the open-air design of the rooms. The only thing I didn't like about Nicuesa was having to leave! Can't wait for my next visit to Nicuesa!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Kerry M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NicuesaLodge, Owner at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, responded to this review, April 22, 2014
It was great having you back with us for the yoga retreat! We are so appreciative of your fantastic review. You told people exactly what it's like at Nicuesa Lodge. Thanks! We look forward to seeing you again next year!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendswood, Texas
Level Contributor
28 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 18, 2014

My husband and I wanted a true rainforest experience while visiting Costa Rica. We found it here. Awesome staff, good food and absolutely beautiful property. They treat you like family here and it really makes you feel at home. Our cabin was tucked away in the jungle surrounded by beauty. We discovered many animals near our cabins front porch. Every evening a short rain shower came and this really made the rainforest come alive. We even had a friendly bat fly in to stay dry for a bit. It was a great experience living in an open air cabin. Much to do during the day. Hike, snorkeling, kayaking were we chose to do. We hiked DIY to the waterfall and that was amazing. They many trails mapped out and they were great. The loop trail was a hard one but worth it. Keep up the good work guys and we will be back with all ojr kiddos next time. They are very jealous that we left them home after seeing our pictures and stories.

  • Stayed March 2014
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank kandicerenee98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NicuesaLodge, Owner at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, responded to this review, March 28, 2014
Hi! We really enjoyed having you and your husband stay with us. Thanks so much for taking the time to write us a great review! You are welcome as part of our large family anytime ... thanks for being open to all of our members, even the bats! :-) Next time, definitely bring your kids; they'll have an adventure to remember forever! What we're all about, you said it best: making dreams come true!
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MD
Level Contributor
117 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 17, 2014 via mobile

First of all the setting of this hotel is spectacular. After a 20 minute boat ride from Golfito, you arrive at this wonderful lush jungle setting, the main lodge is a short walk into the jungle. Checking in is easy, and the staff are great.

Our room was a decent size with wide-open windows and doors (with bug screens) and interesting semi-open bathrooms but smallish beds. The windows allow what breezes there are to flow thru the room. However, they also allow the mega-snoring guy in the room below us to wake us up in the night.

As the lodge is very Eco-friendly, sheets are changed every three days. Normally not a problem, but as there is no air conditioning, and the electricity to the ceiling fan seem to be switched off in the night, and the very high humidity all contribute to a sweaty night.

The food was just OK, nothing special, but not to my taste, however my wife thought it was fine.

Oh, and take shampoo, they do not supply any in the rooms. Nor are there hair dryers. Apparently, if you plug one in and switch it on, it crashes the system. And be prepared to b cut off from the the world if you are used to the internet - there is none.

Would I go back? Ummm, (dramatic pause and muted drum roll), no. Sorry.

Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank Jethrosdad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NicuesaLodge, Owner at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, responded to this review, April 1, 2014
Thank you for your review and thoughtful comments. We really do appreciate them. We are always striving to improve our services and make sure our guests’ experiences are the best possible.

We apologize if there was no shampoo in your room; normally all of our rooms are stocked with hand and body soap, and shampoo. We always regret to hear about any problems at check-out or later. We are always more than happy to make any changes, if possible, to have a guest’s stay be more comfortable – changing sheets, providing more shampoo, changing rooms to a private cabin (where you only have the sounds of the jungle and no other guests), etc. Being an environmentally sustainable hotel, we do our best to conserve water and energy resources, so we don’t change our sheets and towels every day when guests stay multiple days; however, at any time if a guest would like their sheets changed or fresh towels, they need only ask. Our solar panels and backup generator provide 24-hour electricity for lights and fans throughout our property, and our kitchen refrigerators; hair dryers consume too much electricity (often up to 1440 watts) in one shot.

We invite people to come to our remote jungle lodge for the unique experience of being completely immersed in nature, to relax in peace, take downtime to enjoy one another and our amazing natural surroundings of the rainforest and Gulf. Pura Vida!
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Menlo Par
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 9, 2014

Gorgeous, untouched location enabled us to feel like we truly experienced Cost Rica with our boys (ages 8 & 10). We were VERY glad we chose to spend 4 nights there. Guides were friendly and very knowledgeable. This is NOT a luxury destination but a simple, clean, well run lodge. It's very hot, the gulf water is very warm and the jungle is loud (we didn't sleep much). The food is local, simple and freshly made each day. We expected to see much more wild life but we stilled enjoyed ourselves and really relaxed.

Room Tip: Make sure you get a bungalow that you don't share with other visitors.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank MenloMom2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NicuesaLodge, Owner at Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge, responded to this review, March 11, 2014
Thank you so much for taking the time to review us. We appreciate your comments and travel tips, and are very pleased you felt you had a true Costa Rica experience with your family. It's true, the jungle can be loud if you are not used to it. We sleep right through it nowadays. :-) We're glad you enjoyed your time with us in the jungle. Come back again!
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Additional Information about Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge

Property: Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge
Address: Parque Nacional Piedras Blancas, Golfito 1000, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Osa Peninsula > Golfito
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 12 Hotels in Golfito
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Playa Nicuesa is an environmentally-friendly eco-lodge set on a 165-acre private rainforest preserve on the undeveloped Pacific Coast of Golfo Dulce in southern Costa Rica. Our jungle & sea location provides a unique adventure and nature vacation: the front yard is a gulf right off the Pacific Ocean, and the backyard consists of thousands of acres of pristine tropical rainforest. Overall, the experience embraces conservation and harmony with the natural environment. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Hotel Golfito
Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Golfito
Playa Nicuesa Rainforest Lodge Costa Rica/Golfito

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