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“A unique jungle experience.”

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Celeste Mountain Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Buffalo, New York
Level Contributor
17 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“A unique jungle experience.”
Reviewed January 10, 2013

My wife and I started our honeymoon at the mountain lodge and had a great experience. Joel and his family and staff were great, the lodge was beautiful, the food was incredible, and the location couldn't have been cooler. They even threw a New Years party for their guests with a four course meal and champagne! I'd stayed in jungle ecolodges in Belize, but it didn't compare to this. During our stay we felt like we were a part of the jungle, but we were never uncomfortable. We especially appreciated their progressive approach to tourism and their commitment to both the local community and environment. We'd highly recommend this place to anyone looking for a responsible and unique experience in Costa Rica.

Room Tip: Get a room on the second floor facing the jungle! The view was awesome!
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank BeagleOn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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642 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (62)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed October 28, 2012

We had an amazing time here from the start. We did not book this stop. We stopped here on a whim after a long day of driving. We drove in and found the place almost entirely empty. The owner met us at the door and was very welcoming. We made arrangements for the night which included dinner and breakfast both. He and his wife usually close the place in October due to the rainy season as it turns out but had made accommodations for another couple that had booked through a booking agent.
Thank you to them.
I had to give an average rating on the sleep quality just because the beds were too hard for both my wife and I which kept us tossing all night.
The food was excellent and elegantly presented, the rooms have a European flair which is clean and neat, the grounds were beautiful and expertly maintained and the conversations with the owners were intiment and fascinating.

Room Tip: Ask Joel he knows.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Joel H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hartford, Connecticut
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed October 28, 2012

Fantastic lodge with very hospitable owners who make you feel at home. The food was homemade and delicious. It is nestled in the mountains with nature all around and wonderfull landscaped grounds. I would highly recomend a stay at the Celeste.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
Thank Michael B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Paris, France
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed August 27, 2012

Our experience at the Celeste Mountain Lodge was incredible !
Warm welcome, delicious dishes, and fantastic windowless window, the noise of the nature are just amazing.Wonderfull location for impressive hiking !
Mostly recommended !

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Claire T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Germany
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed August 21, 2012

wow, what an awesome place. I made a wrong booking(wrong day) and they still gave me a room without any argueing. And all that in perfect english.

The place itself is good for familes, but we were there with 3 young adults and we were thrilled by the stuning view in the valley.

The food is just awesome for that price! had the best food on the trip here.

And after we checked out, they helped us with a flat tire, thank you guys!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
1 Thank w00zieGermany
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Florida
Level Contributor
20 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed June 10, 2012

I had the pleasure of staying at this lodge for 3 nights. The lodge bills itself as being a Responsible Tourism project. Recycled materials were used in the construction of the lodge. Hot water is provided by solar panels. Biodegradable soaps are used. Minimum lighting is used at light to minimize the impact on the surrounding forest and lights are turned off in the public areas at 10pm.

The rooms are basic and pleasant. The bed was very comfortable and I slept like a rock! Another reviewer mentioned that noise can carry because the windows are screened with shutters. Also, one person in our group had trouble sleeping because of the Common Pauraques vocalizing most of the night. This is a nocturnal bird whose sounds I found soothing, somewhat reminding me of the sounds of Whip-poor-wills as a kid. If you're sensitive to sounds, just pack some ear plugs.

While the accommodations are fine, the food is the star here. They bill the food as Tropical Costa Rican Fusion using local produce as much as possible. They offer one fixed menu for each meal, but can accommodate special diets with advance notice (one in our group was vegetarian). Every meal was exceptional. I'm a bit of a fussy eater, but found myself being a member of the clean plate club here!

The only minor annoyance was some tiny ants trailing from the bathroom to the shelving in the bedroom. They got into our toiletry bags. After sifting through our things outside, we wiped the shelves with insect repellant and had no further problems.

The grounds are beautifully maintained and you'll want to take time to explore the area. It's also a great place for birding and wildlife! Don't know what you're seeing? No problem since they have various books available so you can easily figure out if you're seeing a Keel-billed Toucan or Black-mandibled Toucan...or if you don't care, you can just call them Flying Bananas!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank anyuserid
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Geneva, Switzerland
Level Contributor
60 reviews
42 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed May 17, 2012

My husband and I stayed at Celeste Mountain Lodge in the end of March. If you land in San Jose in the morning, you could easily get to the lodge by car in about 3hrs. The lodge is positioned on a road about 2-3km up from the village of Bijagua, and before the entrance to the Rio Celeste/Tenorio Park. There really is no better place to stay if you plan to see these main attractions.

The property itself is only few years old, and has rooms on 2 levels, plenty of parking space and one of the best kitchen in town! The package includes 3 delicious meals per day with organic ingredients (fusion meaning a bit of French mix with local cuisine). The ambiance of the dining area is superb with everything clean and well-maintained. This is not a posh 5 stars hotel, so don't come with your high-heels and ties, and prepare to meet plenty of interesting fellow travelers when you dine together in the open and airy space. While we were there, we saw people of all ages, retirees, college kids, couples and families, and from all over the world. Besides the great meals, the services from the owners, manager and other staff were all second to none. If you need anything, just ask and they will do their best to answer.

The rooms themselves all seem quite large, and we were very lucky to have the corner room on the second floor. The concept of having mosquitoes nets and wooden blinds to replace glass windows is brilliant, as they keep the bugs away and the room fresh at all times. The bed was huge and comfortable, and the bathroom was spacious with hot shower (yes, the water was cool in the beginning but got hot after a couple minutes). There was not a lot of space to hang clothes in our room but who needs a big closet when you are in your T-Shirts and shorts most of the times! The Howler Monkeys made noises at dawn, and every morning we could hear different kinds of birds singing outside our room. Frankly, we rather enjoyed hearing these noises and would be quite disappointed if we didn't have this experience. During our stay, we hiked the trails to Rio Celeste and the private trail (made by the owners) near the lodge, did Cano Negro (highly recommend if you want to see caimans and water-birds), and the hot-springs/thermal baths near La Fortuna. The owners and manager have very good knowledges on the local attractions and are not pushy to sell tours. They have leaflets and guide books to lend you, and it was just too bad we ran out of time to do more.

Overall, we had a terrific experience at Celeste Mountain Lodge and would not hesitate to recommend this place to anyone. Everyone working here is genuine (not commercialized), and we felt that they really want to make their guests feel good and welcome.

Room Tip: Corner room on second floor has the best view, but all of them seem large and airy.
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
3 Thank Fabysuzy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Celeste Mountain Lodge

Property: Celeste Mountain Lodge
Address: Access Road To Nat'l Park Tenorio / Rio Celeste | 4 kms east of Bijagua, Bijagua de Upala 21301, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Bijagua de Upala
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 5 Hotels in Bijagua de Upala
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Celeste Mountain Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Celeste Mountain Lodge is a responsible tourism establishment, located in Bijagua de Upala, the door to the Volcano Tenorio National Park and its amazing Rio Celeste (Blue River). An authentic rural area, of great natural beauty, with lots of forest and lots to do, yet so accessible! Celeste Mountain Lodge is unique for its concept and profound sustainable philosophy, its innovations, its details and original decoration, comtemporary architecture in minimalist style integrated in the environment. Surrounded by primary rainforest and hosting its own trail, you will be impressed by its fauna and flora, excellent birdwatching, impressive views onto 2 volcanoes, own own Cuisine fusion and our friendly service, casual, warm and efficient. Share a vision of the world and tourism with ethics, refined simplicity, personality, peace and nature in an unforgettable place... ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Celeste Mountain Hotel Bijagua De Upala
Celeste Mountain Lodge Costa Rica/Bijagua De Upala

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