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“Unique”

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Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge
Ranked #1 of 3 La Virgen B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
ann arbor
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Unique”
Reviewed 6 September 2009

We stayed here July 16-18, 2009. This is definitely a unique place in terms of the architecture motivated by pre-columbian dwellings. Reminded me a bit of the architecture of my ancestral village in India.

The staff were incredibly friendly. We were a family of four. The room was ok though a bit small for 4. They have us 2 double beds and two single beds. An extra fan would have made it a bit more comfortable. While my wife and I were comfortable, our kids had a tougher time (w/ no AC).

Location wise, it is very conveniently close to the Tirimbina reserve, literally a stone's throw. So most of the activities run by the reserve are easily accessible. We did the chocolate tour (highly recommend it), morning bird watching tour (very good but partly rained out). The architectural tour and museum on the grounds are also interesting. The guides at the reserve are very good.

The restaurant on the premises is nice. We ate a couple of meals here. Just a mile or so away on the main road is a very good Mexican restaurant (La Rojo Rana).

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank afamily4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (21)
Date | Rating
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English first
Columbia, MD
Level 6 Contributor
150 reviews
130 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 339 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 March 2009

We stayed at the hotel (now the Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge) for two nights as part of a two-week tour of Costa Rica. The location is terrific, very secluded in the middle of tropical rainforest, and right above the Sarapiquis river. The hotel facilities were also very nice -- good restaurant, great swimming pool, etc. Meals also were very good. However, there are some negatives. The structures are starting to show some wear. For example, the thatched roofs on several buildings have substantially shredded, and the black plastic tarp was the only covering. Also, our rooms were very poorly designed and furnished -- poor lighting, no chairs, awkward bathroom setup -- but they were clean and air-conditioned. The bottom line is that the room was not such a negative as to detract from the lodge's excellent location and other facilities.

  • Stayed February 2009
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
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Helpful?
2 Thank ColumbiaTrekkers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 March 2009

The biggest plus for this hotel in my opinion is that it is a 5 min walk down a path to the Tirimbina Rainforest Nature reserve. Tirimbina offers guided tours for about $25 a person, and if you book one you also get unlimited daytime access to the main trials. The rainforest is stunning, and the guides for the 2 tours we took were terrific. If you like chocolate, you must take the Chocolate tour.
As far as the hotel goes, it has lovely grounds including a small infinity pool. The birdwatching is excellent. They put fruit out on a table in front of the restaurant a couple of times a day and you will see some colourful birds there. For more variety, walk the rather neglected herb garden.
We had a deluxe room which has air conditioning. Surprisingly we didn't need to use it much, but could set it on fan for fresh air (there are no windows, just 2 glass doors for light). The rooms were large, reasonably attractive but nothing special.
All meals are buffet, and are not included in the price. The quality is quite good, fresh and hot, but rather monotonous.
Two things we didn't like about the hotel were that they seemed rather disorganized and that about 90% of the guests were with guided tours. The first night we went for dinner, almost all of the tables had cards on them for different tour companies. There was no card with our name. The tables that were left had no flowers on them and were in the back corner. We felt like second class citizens. We did point out the oversight and a placecard was put out for us the next morning. The second day we went to the front desk and booked for dinner in the al a carte restaurant which supposedly they have. At 6 we were sitting in the bar and waiting for the lights to go on in the restaurant. At 7, still no lights so we inquired at the front desk and were told that as we were the only ones who had booked at the restaurant it wasn't worth there while to bring in an extra chef to cook for us. That would have been fine if they had let us know that was a possibility when we booked and told us to check back before dinner to find out the status.
If you like a smaller more personal establishment, I'd recommend checking with Tirimbina as they have a small lodge of their own.

  • Stayed February 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Kaycrew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
State College, PA
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 January 2009

In August 08' I traveled to Costa Rica by myself. I stayed at SarapiquiS Rainforest Lodge for a little under a week and thoroughly enjoyed myself! I like to stay at places that provide environmentally friendly accommodations and also provide support for the local community. I found SarapiquiS Lodge had everything I was looking for.

I reserved my room via email and also booked most of my meals and activities in advanced so I didn't have to bother booking anything when I arrived. Immediately upon arrival I was taken care of by the amazing staff. I had just made it in time for their buffet style lunch. The food was outstanding and the scenery surrounding the dining area was beautiful! Every morning during breakfast the staff put fruit scraps out to attract some of the local birds. I have never seen so many beautiful and colorful birds in once place! I found out from the really helpful manager, Nydia, that they use local grown foods and actually compost all of the food scraps! Furthermore, I found out that their waste water from their kitchen and guest room bathrooms is treated on-site through a bio-purification system (which includes tanks and wetlands that naturally purify the waste water) before returning the water to the river in better condition than the river itself!

The grounds were beautifully landscaped. My room was one of eight rooms in a large, round rancho structure with a wrap around veranda. Nydia told me (and I loved this) that the ranchos used energy saving bulbs and that the water for the showers and sinks were heated using solar energy! From my room I could hear the Sarapiqui River roaring just a short distance away which was very peaceful. My room was quite spacious, very clean and comfortable. In fact, even with the lodge being in close proximity to the rainforest, there was never a bug problem, which was great! The room was simply and tastefully decorated with local indigenous art hanging on the walls (purchased to support local indigenous artists according to Nydia the manager).

Everyday I had something different and exciting to do! I highly recommend white water rafting and the canopy zip-line tours! The hotel staff booked all of my activities in advanced and set up an amazing itinerary for me! The Lodge was literally 100 feet from the amazing Tirimbina Rainforest Center and after going on their fascinating Chocolate Tour I was allowed to enter the rainforest whenever I pleased. One morning I was walking across the HUGE suspended bridge over the Sarapiqui River to go for a walk in the rainforest and heard howler monkey's in the rainforest!

Overall my experience was unforgettable and I cannot wait to get back to the Lodge someday! As a nature lover I am so happy that there are places out there that are trying to preserve it! I highly recommend any type of traveler to visit SarapiquiS Rainforest Lodge!

  • Liked — Very comfortable, clean and Eco-Friendly
  • Stayed August 2008, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
4 Thank EcoSarah
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mankato, MN
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 January 2009

We Loved our stay at Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge. That's actually the new name for Centro Neotropico. It was a great EXPERIENCE. I read some comments about simple rooms but its important to know why they are kept comfortable, nice but simple. According to the owner, the hotel is one of first in Costa Rica to take sustainable tourism seriously. The water system, rooms, grounds are all designed to co-exist with nature. And I liked the rooms. Comfortable bed, great showers, etc. But more importantly for me, the experience!

The grounds are beautiful and relaxing. We saw many different birds and flowers on the grounds. The eternity pool was great and we played in it for an hour. The food was outstanding and the staff was extremely accomodating.

Nydia, the General Manager, gave us a tour of their amazing indigenous museum which was fascinating. Then she turned us on to the Tirimbina Reserve next door which is an amazing large reserve with hanging bridges, rainforest and the coolest "Chocolate Tour" ever.

Finally, we played in the Sarapiquis River at a nearby swimming hole and loved it. Bext time, we will go white water rafting which I hear is some of the best in the country. Loved this place and will definitely be back...

Stayed May 2008, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
6 Thank BlueDoug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Washington DC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 September 2008

The hotel is undergoing renovations so it isn't as pretty as it could be but generally I would recommend this place.

We were the only guests at the hotel for our stay of two nights which was a little creepy but none the less it was a nice place to stay. The room was sparse but had AC. The only thing we would have liked was somewhere to put our suitcase, the only things in the room were a bed, a body-shaped coat rack and a long skinny entry table. Very nice bathroom.

The food was fine. Since we were the only guests they didn't do the buffet I guess they normally have. Dinner one night was a typical platter and then next was soup b/c I wasn't feeling well (due to nothing other than an illness contracted in the states). Breakfasts were nothing to write home about.

Being next door to Tirimbina Rainforest reserve was awesome. I wouldn't recommend the bat tour, it was an hour and a half bat lecture. In a classroom & everything. Supposedly, it isn't that way all the time but it was raining that night. $40 a little steep for a lecture. It did get us free access into the reserve though...

The pool was nice for a late afternoon dip. The gardens were pretty too.

We paid around $150 including taxes for each night which I think was high but our guide arranged all of our stays so I couldn't price shop.

  • Liked — Location to rainforest & whitewater rafting.
  • Disliked — People (had there been any) would have seen right into our room w/out shades closed.
  • Stayed September 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank WashingtonDCCreative
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Costa Rica
1 review
Reviewed 2 April 2008

Though most of your stay in this area will be experiencing the many outdoor activities such as hiking in the rain forest and rafting the Sarapiqui River, take an hour or two to visit this excellent indigenous museum. You will find a rather small collection of artefacts carefully displayed and thoroughly explained.

The high-end, eco-tourism hotel where it's housed, also advertises many unique learning activities in the area on a billboard in the reception area.

Helpful?
Thank barefootinCostaRica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge

Property: Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge
Address: La Virgen 3069, Costa Rica (Formerly Centro Neotropico Sarapiquis)
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Heredia > Sarapiqui > La Virgen
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in La Virgen
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 40
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
SarapiquiS Rainforest Lodge, built as a pre-Columbian village and because of an outstanding concept of ecotourism and conservation of indigenous culture - a unique model in Ecotourism in Costa Rica. Proudly we have level three in Certification for Sustainable Tourism, officially certified by the Costa Rican Tourism Institute (ICT) The hotel has six ecological structures Palenque type: four units for bedrooms, one with air-conditioned rooms, Amphitheatre and a central building with lobby, restaurant, bar, a photo gallery, administration and boutique gifts. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Centro Neotropico Sarapiquis Hotel La Virgen
Sarapiquis Rainforest Lodge Sarapiqui, Costa Rica - La Virgen

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