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Reviewed August 18, 2017

This hotel offers some amazing hikes, sights and food. Owners terry and Katya are wonderful and friendly. Would recommend to all family and friends. Buffett food, beautiful rooms over looking the carate beach absolutely beautiful x

  • Stayed: August 2017, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank Laura M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lookoutinn, Owner at Lookout Inn Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 23, 2017

we all here at the look out inn are happy your vacation time was wonderful here -- thanks so much -- sea turtles up now laying eggs on our beach out front a great thing to witness

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Reviewed August 17, 2017

We booked for one night and ended up sleeping 6! Before arriving there we were talking how we would build a Lodge in Costa rica - eco-friendly, just platforms in the trees, no walls - and tataaaa! That's how Lookout Inn is!

Lookout Inn stands now firmly in our Top Two of Best Lodges In The world (ex aequo), the other one being the Ngepi Camp in Namibia.

We were warmly welcomed by the owner, Ter, and his excellent team, all nice people. Coffee, water, tea and juice are free throughout the day. There are several observation terraces, where monkeys and macaws come for food (offered by the owner), so you can see them from close and they don't devastate the hotel kitchen (but beware, these are still wild animals! And do.not.feed.them.never.never.never, even involuntarily, so it is better not to leave open food in the rooms).

Now on to the review. The hotel is built on a steep slope right above the beach, in a beautiful jungle garden that the owner and his crew have created over the years from what was originally pastures.

Ter's hospitality is excellent, he really cares for his guests. Buffet food is excellent and plenty, for all three meals, with vegetarian options (we eat mostly vg but did not ask for them, so please ask, and you can even tell them if you don't like this or that). Fish is excellent and always fresh. Ter will not let you sit alone and place you with people around two large tables: lots of interesting travelers come here and you sure will have something to talk about!

All "luxury" rooms are well-decorated, with hammock and and sea view. Over the whole place, the thundering sound of waves on the closeby beach is pervasive, day and night. And when it rains, you notice it! The rooms are open (no walls), and there are mosquito nets on the beds only, which feature small fans. The detached cabinas run on their own 12Volt solar panel and car battery, which powers lights and fans.
Our first "room" or rather cabina was the blue Butterfly, up on the top, huge area, airy and 2 double beds. While you sit on the toilet, you may see a coati or monkeys roaming around.
We also had the "Penthouse", with a double bed and a sofa, which is in the main house on the upper level, with its private terrace with hammock, sea view of course. And finally the "Honeymoon suite", set a little lower than the main house, but even bigger, 3 hammocks. You could easily set up a party with 20 people, and there is a private "jacuzzi"! It enables an extensive Honeymoon trip, featuring a suspended double bed, a single bed and double bunks, so yes up to 3 people can join in the honeymoon!
There are smaller cabinas with a double bed and shared bathroom, lower in the garden. There is a network of wooden steps between all these cabinas. All cabinas are intimate from each other.
About tours and treks: Ter and Caty can organize treks to Corcovado for you, as they have an office in Puerto Gimenez, they know excellent guides (we had excellent experience with Oscar Cordero, and Erick Villa) and organize all the bureaucracy with the national park. They have also an excellent Frog Tour at nightfall, showing you the the cute frogs in the garden and some other animals. You can also ask him about a turtle tour with the local NGO, to see how they care about turtle nests, their hatchery etc.. With some luck, you may even see turtles hatching on the beach. It helps to have a red lamp, as only red lamps are acceptable on the beach at night. Seeing a bright light, a turtle full of eggs will not nest, but get back to the sea and just dump them in the water. Do you want to be responsible for the death of 100+ small turtles?
And you can rent a canoe on the nearby laguna for watching birds and reptiles, which we regretted not to do.
There is a network of nice forest trails in the steep hills above, which you access through the "stairway to heaven" in the main building.
Enough activities for a few days!

The beach: it is just across the dirt track, beautiful black sand, palm trees, but during our visit in July there was a lot of swell, and the big waves crashing on the beach were jjust too dangerous even to dip our feet. With small kids, beware! But it makes great walks and the pelicans fishing are a beauty.

Access is a bit adventurous, there is 50km of dirt track from Puerto Gimenez, with some steep slopes ending in river crossings (6 in total I think), so drive carefully. A 4x4 is definitely advisable. We had a Suzuki Jimny which literally climbs on trees with its halfgear, a 2-door a small car for not more than 3 adults, or 2 adults and two kids. It handles river crossings well (step in the water before if you're unsure about the depth, don't drive too fast, 8-10km/h max, and don't splash like in the movies!).

There is a nice bar, with happy hour, and excellent cocktails. Curfew is at 8 to 9pm latest, but you won't sleep beyond 5-5:30am anyway!

Internet and technology: You can recharge your devices during the day, and according to our son, they have the best internet in Costa Rica. Wi-fi in the main building only, but there are many places to lounge while messaging to your friends how great this place is!

Lastly, a word of advice: if you need walls, air-con, intimate bathrooms, hot showers,
lifts, a hairdryer, a large pool, and hate critters in your cabina, it's definitely not a place for you. However, if you are adventurous, it will be the experience of your life!

Room Tip: Ask for blue butterfly (sleeps 4), Penthouse (2) or Honeymoon suite (5) if you would like to experience the real Lookout!
  • Stayed: July 2017, traveled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank dominiquebovey
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lookoutinn, Owner at Lookout Inn Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 18, 2017

holly cow this is not a review this is a book a million thank you;s for this new movie title -- we all want to thank you 3 for hanging out with us and each morning i knew you all where going to stay another day .. thanks for loving us all here at the famous lookout inn

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Reviewed August 17, 2017

Staying at this Inn is like staying with wonderful family members who love you and think of everything. We arrived here after traveling all day and coming through a rainstorm and we were welcomed with a lovely, warm group dinner. In our family we stayed in both the tiki huts and monkey house which were clean and charming. The property is large and is all eco-sensitive with solar power. There is a true sense that owners Terry and Katja love the land, the animals and the guests. They took time to speak to everyone and seemed vey aware of all of our various needs, allergies, travel plans, interests, all in a natural, easy way that made us feel completely cared for and at home.
Each morning we were treated to the sight of a family of scarlet macaws that eat seeds from a platform on the breakfast deck and in the afternoon a local coati came each day to enjoy the bananas that he knew Terry would give him. He was followed by a large family of squirrel monkeys that put on a little show for us. The hikes nearby are amazing, especially when we could then return to an extensive home cooked meal and fall asleep to the sound of nearby crashing ocean waves. We will definitely come back!

  • Stayed: August 2017, traveled with family
    • Rooms
    • Service
Thank DrDHJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lookoutinn, Owner at Lookout Inn Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 18, 2017

those lil monkeys are back waiting for some one to take a photo -- i want to thank you and the family for sharing your time with us here at the lookout inn... dont forget we have a boutique hotel in town -- puerto jimenez .. with an amazing pool -- see ya all again soon.. thanks again....terrrrrr

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Reviewed August 16, 2017

My 2 twenty-something kids and I spent nearly a week at Lookout Lodge, which we found thanks to Trip Advisor. This is not an easy destination to reach--Carate is not even really a town, and Lookout Lodge is not even in Carate proper--but that is part of its rustic charm. The Osa peninsula is one of the most biodiverse places on earth, and LL highlights this--it is open (we highly recommend the Monkey House, an open room for a family), and the animals come right to you. The sight of a flock of macaws in flight welcomed us, and the natural wonders of the place built from there. Terry, the expat American owner, runs a tight ship. There are not restaurants or stores to speak of anywhere near, so one pretty much has to eat at the Lodge; this would be a disadvantage if the food--healthy, fresh, and abundant--were not so delicious! The Lodge is about 2 (hot and sweaty) miles from the entry of Corcovado National Park, so the location is ideal. Highly recommended!

Stayed: July 2017
Thank GringatravelerAustin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lookoutinn, Owner at Lookout Inn Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 17, 2017

thanks so much this is about right on as you can get...off the grid eco lodge end of the road no town no tv no radio just wild life and a remote beautiful black sand beach -- and yes great food family style buffet -- we cater to all food diets and allergy's -- and all ways service with a smile thanks again .. terrrrrr

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Reviewed August 13, 2017 via mobile

This place is absolutely a hidden treasure and is run by wonderful people. Thank you so much Terry and Katya! It's to get away from civilization and technology and really be in touch with the wildlife and earth. Will definitely stay here when we come back:)

Stayed: July 2017, traveled with family
Thank Devin K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
lookoutinn, Owner at Lookout Inn Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded August 14, 2017

another key west guest.. thanks guys come back anytime and dont forget bring flashlites for the wild nite tours to the lagoon and our 2 garden frog ponds -- and we all so have a beautiful hotel in puerto jimenez thanks again...

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