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“Nice place,bad food”

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Hacienda Guachipelin
San Jose
Level Contributor
23 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Nice place,bad food”
Reviewed January 5, 2013 via mobile

Located inside a National Park, give you the opportunity to enjoy the beatiful scenarios: volcanos, hot springs, waterfalls. My complain is about the food. There is only one place to have it and it is not close to good. It is expensive nor for the quality or taste.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Laura V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, General Manager at Hacienda Guachipelin, responded to this review, January 10, 2013
Thanks for sending a review Dentagro . We are happy to hear that you found the location convenient , and that you found plenty of attractions in the area.
About the food, most of the people love it and some hate it. There is no middle point here, just extremes. We are trying hard to inform people that there are options in the menu and that there options of places to eat close by.
Pura Vida !!!
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Seattle, Washington, United States
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed January 1, 2013

First, the rooms:

The room we stayed in was cool (AC), had a small TV, and one of the only hot showers we took on our 1 month tour throughout Costa Rica and Nicaragua. It was clean. The only complaint is that WiFi wasn't very strong in our room but you could go outside for decent reception and rooms closer to the lobby probably had a better signal.

The amenities:
There is a pool (which we didn't use) that was very clean. Nice little bar with strong cheap drinks and a pretty decent restaurant. Breakfast is buffet style -- nothing fancy but decent omelette bar, juices, coffee etc.

The adventure tour:
Wow! $85 for the all day adventure tour is totally worth it. I had a lot more fun than I expected. It was my first time zip-lining but I felt totally safe and had a blast rappelling and zip-lining upside down. Rock climbing, rope swings, a horseback ride, swimming near a small waterfall, river tubing, and, to top it all off, a super relaxing mud bath and volcanic hot springs. You must do this!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Josh P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, General Manager at Hacienda Guachipelin, responded to this review, January 2, 2013
Thanks Josh P for reviewing Guachipelin. We are glad to hear that you enjoyed your time with us.
Yes the $85 Day of Adventure package is a good value package, actually is very popular with our guests. Since guests have the hot springs included, in the package Simbiosis Mud springs is included instead.
We are working on the internet, but since the rooms are distributed on a large property, we have technical difficulties.
We are happy to know that you liked the food and the drinks at the bar. Alberto is a very good bartender.
We hope to see you soon at Guachipelin.
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Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
43 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

I agree with the previous reviewers: the location is perfect, next to the Volcan Rincon de la Vieja, this hacienda has a great Adventure package which includes horse riding, canopy, rappell, tarzan swings, rock climbing (this was the only thing that scared me a bit) and the best: a 60 minutes white rafting in tubes along the Rio Negro. The guides where very professional and made big effort to be sure we had a great day. Some people comes from far away to do this tour, but being a guest gives you some priority. They took videos and pictures during the whole adventure, which they sold at $ 40 at the end of the day: it worth the price, they got great shoots.
They also have a place with 6 hot spring pools (some nice, others too hot) where you got volcanic mud to paint all over your body, it smells bad (due to the sulfur) but they says it is good for the health, and it was very funny and relaxing.
They provide free transportation to every place, with some schedule (Costa Rican style, it is never too accurate , but they are very polite).
They also took us to the entrance to the Rincon de la Vieja National Park, just check the time of pick up and drop off because it goes every 2 1/2 hours. In the PArk we did the shortest loop, called "Las Pailas", which is the name of the volcanic geysers and buble mud, product of the volcanic activity. It took us almost 3 hours, because it was raining heavy, but it is worth the effort. Watching the craters "smoking" and the bubbling mud is amazing. Just one critic: the path is not properly signaled and they run out of maps in the entrance (this is a national park, not to blame the hotel), so we got lost several times. Another piece of advise: you will need to cross a river three times, so our shoes ended soaked, take some rubber shoes to put on when you cross the rivers (no bridge).
With the delay we arrived back to the pick up location 15 minutes late, the bus already departed but they were very nice and they sent it back to pick us up from the hotel.
Now the bad part: the FOOD IS HORRIBLE AND A STEAL!!! I cannot understand why they do not change the cook. The buffet cost $ 18 and it is so lousy , overcooked, tasteless, etc. It is strange, all over Costa Rica you eat simple but very tasty food (rice, plantains, beans, meat and chicken all around). This is a horrible version of it, and too costly. They take advantage that you are a hostage there, there is nothing else around unless you have a car and drive 20 minutes.
The only good meal was the pizza, thin crust, a lot of cheese, but it took hem 50 minutes to get it ready.
The Adventure package includes the same horrible meal as lunch, do not bother to eat too much, because you have 45 minutes, and you will be horse riding and tubing afterwards.
Anyway: I recommend Hacienda Guachipelin, but bring some snacks and food :-)

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank fercho29
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, General Manager at Hacienda Guachipelin, responded to this review, January 8, 2013
Hello fercho29 , thanks for your review and thanks for your thoughts about our tours. Our guides try really hard to give the sense of safety , and of course hotel guests have priority.
Our springs are natural, and so is the volcanic mud, which comes from Simbisis, the other hot springs at Guachipelin.
The volcanic activity is the main thing at Guachipelin, and we encourage guests to visit the park.
About our food, there are options if people find the buffet expensive ($15+tips and taxes= $18). Options like pizza, hamburger sandwich that start at $10 . There are restaurants in the area , at the parks entrance, a sanwich or a burger at "Soda La Vieja " from $4.5 to $6 and it is 5 minutes driving from Guachipelin. We have to desagree that it is a 20 minute drive. Also in Curubande there are options in "Soda Curubande" and that is a 5 minute drive.
If you take the time to read the menu or ask for options , you will find them.
Sorry that you did not like the food and happy you liked the rest.
Pura Vida.
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na
Level Contributor
27 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

Fantastic location, decent/nice and clean rooms, personnel do not understand english with exception of the barkeeper, dinner was disgusting (worst we had in Costa Rica), but bar was good; in addition waitress in restaurant was extremely impolite and grumpy.

Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
Helpful?
Thank Christoph O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, General Manager at Hacienda Guachipelin, responded to this review, January 2, 2013
Christoph O thanks for the review and thanks for noting that the waitress was not polite. That is against our policies. On the language, we are working with our staff so they can learn some English. About the food , we will see what happened that day. We would appreciate a little feedback on the exact dates that you stayed with us, so we can pin point what exactly happened.
Alberto is a good bartender and everyone likes him and his cocktails.
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Medford, New Jersey
Level Contributor
21 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed December 31, 2012

It is obvious by the title that the food here is the worst I have ever had. The Hacienda caters to tourist groups bused in and out. The food is "Americanized buffet." If you like salad and rice pudding you won't starve. All of this for $18 a person! The best deal is pizza in the bar. If the hotel would stick to good Costa Rican food, they would probably be better off.
However, to be fair, it is a lovely spot. The grounds are well tended and everything is spotless. The tours are well arranged and the guides are great. The tubing trip was really fun. Don't forget to tip the tour guides. They deserve it. Hotel staff is everywhere on the extensive grounds. They are always there to help.
Just remember to stop at Mc Donalds in Liberia or get used to pizza at every meal except breakfast.

Room Tip: There are 3 types: standard, superior and suites. Pick superior unless you like a really small room...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank james_wert
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, General Manager at Hacienda Guachipelin, responded to this review, January 2, 2013
Sorry to hear that the food was the worst you had james_wert . We try to do our best, some people love it and some people simply don't. We try to serve Costarrican food (fish, beef, chicken, rice, beans, vegetables, pasta), but you will never find french fries or fried chicken in our buffet, so we feel it is not "americanized". Our buffet is worth $18 , as you point out , but includes taxes and tips. The buffet dinner includes a salad bar, chips, bread, 6 options of hot servings, soup , 3 options of desserts natural juice and coffee, plus is an all you can eat.
We will do more research with our guests to make sure that the food is very good to everyone.
glad to know that you liked our pizza, which is oven made.
Also glad to know that you liked the gardens and the tours and the staff.
Once again, thanks for taking your time to review our property.
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Trollhättan Sweden
2 reviews
Reviewed December 29, 2012

Close to the Vulcano and National Park this is a perfect place to stay a few days! Especially I recommend a guided tour to the forest, and if you are lucky to get the very initiated and cunning guide Cesar Guell, I know that you will have a very interesting couple of hours!

Leif Sweden

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Leif505
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, General Manager at Hacienda Guachipelin, responded to this review, December 30, 2012
Thanks Leif505 for letting the TA your thoughts. Happy to know that Cesar was good guide in your tour. He is good pointing large mammals birds and monkeys. He knows a lot about all of the volcanic activity too.
We are happy to know that you like horses, we do too.
We hope to see you again soon.
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Gettysburg
Level Contributor
62 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed December 28, 2012

Our stay at the Hacienda Guachipelin was less than 24 hours but we managed to eat lunch, dinner and breakfast there and found the food to be just fine. The lunch and breakfast buffet were very nice. The a la carte menu was small but satisfactory. Beware that not all servers speak English but the manager was happy to help with translation. Our room was comfortable and cool. TV was a bit tricky to operate but the housekeeper graciously helped us get it turned on and tuned in. The pool was relaxing and overall there were no screaming kids anywhere--just well behaved adults. I indulged in a late afternoon massage which was needing after 8 days of touring the country on bumpy roads. We walked past the corral where the horses were being readied for a morning ride and they appeared healthy to us although we are not qualified vets. I would certainly return to Hacienda Guachipelin.

Room Tip: Ask to be away from the corral where the horses are kept. Smells a bit there.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank gettysburggal35
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
jose b, General Manager at Hacienda Guachipelin, responded to this review, January 1, 2013
Thanks for your review gettysburggal35 , We are happy to know that you enjoyed your stay and the food and the massage at Guachipelin. Just to let you know we are sponsoring an english course for our staff, to make it easier for everybody. We hope to see you again.
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Additional Information about Hacienda Guachipelin

Property: Hacienda Guachipelin
Address: Parque Nacional Rincon de la Vieja, Rincon de La Vieja 208-5010, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Rincon de La Vieja
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 7 Hotels in Rincon de La Vieja
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Hacienda Guachipelin 3*
Number of rooms: 54
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hacienda Guachipelin is a comfortable hotel with 54 rooms, each with private bathroom and hot water. The best Costa Rican ecotourism lodge for adventure travel and nature lovers, located at the entrance of Rincon de la Vieja Volcano National Park. This is the most visited National Park in Guanacaste. For the adventurer, there are many activities like horseback riding, the Canyon canopy tour, Rio Negro Tubing, canyoneering, bird watching, as well as trekking to the crater of Rincon de la Vieja Volcano. Free transportation to the National Park and the hot springs. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hacienda Guachipelin Hotel Rincon De La Vieja
Hacienda Guachipelin Costa Rica/Rincon De La Vieja

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