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“High reviews for hike, not facility.”

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Los Quetzales Lodge & Spa
Certificate of Excellence
San Diego
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“High reviews for hike, not facility.”
Reviewed 16 August 2014

Los Quetzales Lodge and Spa is a rustic, somewhat run-down cross between a hotel and a hostel. If you come expecting luxury, you will be disappointed. That being said, it had a certain charm and a lot of character and would be a great place to come with a large group of nature lovers. Our room was clean and comfortable but very basic, (the bathtub, however, was pretty awful, with a big patched hole- see photo). I had a massage in the spa which was inexpensive and good, (though it was a bit of a shock to step from behind the curtain and encounter the next waiting guest; each of us clothed only in a towel!) What made Los Quetzales special was the cloud rainforest hike which is included with the price of the room. We were the only guests on the hike, and were taken by tractor up a very muddy path into the rainforest. Los Quetzales has some spectacular cabins built up in this rainforest; they would be a perfect place to stay if you are into bird watching or hiking. We quickly found out why we were given rubber boots for the hike- it was extremely muddy and rocky. But what a hike! We took the easier of the two hikes up to the waterfall, and it was breathtaking. We don't speak Spanish and our guide spoke little English, but he was still able to communicate several interesting things about what we were seeing. The highlight, however, is when he took us to one of the cabins and gave us a hummingbird feeder to hold. Instantly we were surrounded by at least a dozen lovely hummingbirds, flitting around our heads and through our arms and surrounding the feeder. Giant iridescent purple hummingbirds were part of the mix. It was incredibly magical- a truly once in a lifetime experience.

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
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1 Thank pblelloch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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266 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (79)
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English first
San Vito, Costa Rica
Level 4 Contributor
44 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 August 2014

We were two couples traveling together (we're birders; our friends photographers), and found Los Quetzales to be perfect for our interests. The rooms downstairs and behind the main lodge were small and truly basic, but with a comfortable double bed and a single bed to put luggage on. There is only one bedside lamp in these lower budget rooms, because there is only room for one bedside table. (There is also an overhead light). There was plenty of hot water for showering after a long and coolish hike in the cloud forest. It was the rainy season, and prices are rock-bottom at only $39.00 for these small rooms, and all meals separate. (Or, one can choose a package deal with all meals included, or just breakfast). We were only there two nights, but if we were there longer we would want more spacious rooms. The restaurant and lounge are really charming, with lots of original art, maps, photos from times past, and a wood-burning stove in the middle of the lounge to make things really cozy. Drinks are delivered to the guests who want them while reading their Ibooks or email. WiFi was excellent in this remote place! The hotel arranges for private guides, which we preferred rather than a group hike, so we could leave at 7:30 AM for the mountain. Excellent guide and we were all pleased with the experience. We expected rain in late July, and it arrived by mid-morning. Not to miss is the hike in primary forest of the Amistad Biosphere Reserve. Spectacular. The food at the lodge is reasonably priced and there is a large menu for every taste and pocketbook. Guadalupe is known for its produce and the locals make jams and jellys, so we obliged by taking some home to Costa Rica, just two hours away including border passage in Rio Sereno.

Room Tip: We chose the least expensive rooms, and they were were fine since we were outdoors all day.
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank Gail H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bocas del Toro Province, Panama
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 August 2014

After having spent a few days in Boquete, I wanted some place with less tourism and I came across Los Quetzales and Guadalupe and it was perfect! Guadalupe is a very small town about an hour by bus from Volcan, a bit over two hours from David. I did go for the dorm rooms by the central building as I was told that they were not very busy these days. There is a female and male dorm room, which I as a single female traveler thought was great while a woman travelling with her boyfriend and sharing the dorm room with me for two nights (and she was the only other person in the dorm) was not too happy about. The rate I paid for the dorm bed had the large breakfast buffet and guided daily walks included. There are two trails that the walks usually go to; about 20 min. up a bumpy road to where the Cabanas are, right in the forest. For the hikes you change to rubber boots, which is perfect for the muddy trails and for the trail to the 'Tres Cascadas' where you have to wade through a small river a couple of times. The guided hikes themselves are about one hour, but with the car ride back and forth it took us about three hours in total.
There is not a whole lot to do in Guadalupe, there is an Orchid Farm called 'Finca Dracula' which you can visit and if you are lucky get a guided tour; I did not get a guided tour, because the guide was not available and had to pay the same price, but had a nice walk through the beautiful gardens. The 'Finca Dracula' is about a 15-20 min hike up the hill. There are a couple of ladies who sell strawberries and other fruit made goodies along the road. By the 'Mirador Las Fresas' you can pay a small entrance fee of $ 0.50 and climb up the hill for about 5-10 minutes to get great views on the surrounding area.
There is a supermarket and a couple of smaller restaurants, which I did not try out. I was very happy with the options at the hotel's restaurant, as a vegetarian travelling in Panama I had had a lot of rice and beans and was enchanted to find a salad buffet and vegetarian soups and meals (approx. $3,50-$8). There is always fresh bread and water served with the food, so if you are travelling on a budget you can still eat cheap.
Next to the restaurant is a spacious 'living room' where you have plenty of comfy seating, books, games, computers, a TV, a ping pong table and table soccer. At night and when it rains it gets quite cool (below 14 degrees C) and there are two fire places which are lit and spread a comfortable atmosphere and warmth.
Another place to hike is 'Las Nubes', an entrance to the Parque Nacional Amistad which lies at the border to Costa Rica. A taxi took me from the hotel to the park entrance for $5 each way, the park fee is another $5 if you find someone to pay it to. There are two different options for non guided walks which I both hiked; El Retono, an easy, family friendly walk that takes about an hour and another hike to a waterfall which is rated as very difficult and only for people in excellent physical shape.
Resting in one of the hammocks in the large gardens is great when the sun shines and spa treatments are a bargain and of excellent quality if you want to relax a bit. There are also some other options like trout fishing in the hotel's pond or horse riding.

I enjoyed my stay at Los Quetzales and can absolutely recommend it!

  • Stayed July 2014, travelled solo
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Ann K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Playa del Carmen, Mexico
Level 6 Contributor
115 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2014

Two of us stayed at the main hotel, just behind the restaurant. We were initially given a downstairs room but asked for and got an upstairs room. The room was basic and nice. Lots of hummingbirds on the feeders and flowers around the hotel. We ate in the restaurant for several meals and enjoyed the food. We were there for Easter weekend during strawberry season, so lots of Panamanian tourist show up in the quiet little town. We had excellent strawberry ice cream, banana bread, strawberries and cream, and shish kabobs from street vendors. We took advantage of the free birding tour that came with our room, which went on trails near the cabins. Then we waked up to the cabins a couple more times during our stay. We saw many birds at the feeders there, and we saw several quetzals at the parking area for the cabins. We even saw a male quetzal sitting on a nest in a hole in a tree. We took a private birding tour from a guide that was recommended by the hotel. He was excellent and we saw at least 10 quetzals on that tour, plus many other birds. The staff was very friendly. We arrived by bus and did not need a car to get around the small town. The hot tubs were not functional when we were there. We did not visit the spa.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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1 Thank joslyn1966
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vilcabamba, Ecuador
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 July 2014

I believe this resort is extremely overpriced. Even with my friends’ jubilado (retiree) discount, which took about 30 percent off our bill, it was too expensive. I was so upset about the pricing that I thought of leaving. We stayed in Chalet 8. The bed is decent and the bathroom is nice, but the sofa in the bedroom is so worn that you are almost on the ground when you sit in it. The whole chalet is worn and in serious need of updating. Guests who stayed in rooms in the lodge and in the newer cabins also found the prices too high. If I went again I would stay in a nearby town or on the Costa Rican side of Las Amistad International Park, where you can find rooms for much less.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank 1travlgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dallas, Texas
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 26 June 2014

The cabanas are for hard core birders or 4WD enthusiasts or anyone with enough pluck to enjoy a rugged trip. Once you make it over the very rocky road (even with AWD Kia, I bottomed out many times), it is the best place in Panama to stay. The cains are nestled in the deep forest and we saw many Quetzals right from the cabin in the aguacatillo trees above. We stayed in the upper level of Cabana 4 and could not get internet. However, if you walk up to Cabana 6, you can get excellent internet. That is where their tower is and the owner was kind enough to give us the keys so we could sit on the front porch and use internet as much as we liked. The signal was good enough that I could talk to my husband in the States using Google Talk from my computer.

The kitchen was pretty good, with enough pots and pans to cook trout (excellent) that we ordered from the lodge to be delivered, as well as rice and veggies. Big dining table and lots of plates, silverware, etc.

There was a wood burning stove and plenty of firewood and newspaper to start a cozy fire. We had some damp clothes that we hung above to dry in the heat.

Overall, just a magical place and well worth the drive. We were in Panama for 10 days and this was my favorite spot. We were here June 18 and 19 and still saw at least 5 Quetzals easily, as well as many other birds. It rained a bit everyday but cleared up and the temperature was perfect and cool.

Room Tip: Cabana 6 is up a pretty steep incline, but the view is spectacular. If you had help getting luggage...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Als466
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Corvallis, Oregon USA
Level 3 Contributor
24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 30 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 May 2014

Two of us stayed (in room 15) for a couple of nights; this is on the ground level, not part of the main lodge but across the grassy area. We had a fireplace which was very nice given that the rainy season has started and it's a bit cool at night. The bed was fine, though a bit soft for one of us. The shower was amazing, and no problem with hot water. Breakfast was fine, good fruit, eggs, cereal and breads, as well as juices, coffee and organic hot chocolate made there from locally grown cacao. In fact, upon arriving, we were greeted with hot chocolate and coffee. We ate two dinners, one lunch and two breakfasts there and their food is excellent--the prices are very reasonable as well. We had fresh tuna (three of us for dinner one night) prepared three different ways and we were all pleased with our selections. Most of the greens and vegetables are grown right there on the property.

What we really appreciate is the efforts that Carlos, the owner, has put into developing this ecolodge. Carlos is quite knowledgeable about the environment in this part of Central America, as well as its wildlife. As part of the cost of the room, you are offered a free guided hike, and we thoroughly enjoyed that. What a beautiful area of Panama this is. We cannot wait to go back. We just want to emphasize that Carlos and his staff are so hospitable. We really felt at home and want to share with everyone what a lovely experience you can look forward to having.

Further, I chose to have a massage. For 90 minutes, at a cost of only 45 dollars, I had one of the best Deep Tissue massages that I've had in years. (Two of the women who work at the reception desk are trained in massage.)

Overall, we highly recommend Los Quetzales. We look forward to returning soon.

Room Tip: we stayed in room 15, so ground level. The ones above looked great too, but we were only two so we...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank NamasteJudi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Los Quetzales Lodge & Spa

Property: Los Quetzales Lodge & Spa
Address: Parque International la Amistad | PO Box 55-0039, Guadalupe, Panama
Region: Panama > Panama Province > Guadalupe
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Speciality Lodging in Guadalupe
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Los Quetzales Lodge & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 22
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Also Known As:
Los Quetzales Hotel Guadalupe
Los Quetzales Lodge And Spa

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