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“Great for the view of the volcano and finding wildlife”
Review of Arenal Lodge

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Arenal Lodge
Certificate of Excellence
South Jersey
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Great for the view of the volcano and finding wildlife”
Reviewed 17 July 2008

ABOVE AVERAGE for property and nature.
OKAY for accomodations.

We came for the view of the volcano and to see wildlife and our family of 4 (2 teens) saw more than we expected. This is why I rated the hotel "above average"

We arrived late afternoon and took a hike down the Plantation Trail, which is lined with a variety of plants and trees like banana, coffee, etc. Walking along, you'll come to a beautiful fountain. Keep walking, you'll find a gazebo with a beautiful view and hammocks. We saw a peccary and lots of birds. Hiking back, it started raining (and rained all night.) My daughter and I went to the ponds next to the pool to find frogs, and we saw so many colorful tree frogs. At night, we opened our windows and enjoyed the frog symphony. (Don't know if it's every night or just when it's raining)

We spent lots of time on our private balcony - what a view! There's a pair of parrots that fly around and will chatter with you.

Woke at 5 am and had a marvelous view of the sunrise on the volcano. (See pictures) You won't see the lava flow from this hotel.

At breakfast, the staff puts fruit on tree branches and many varieties of birds come. There are big windows with views of the property and volcano.

There's a pool table in the bar that kept my son entertained.

As far as the accomodations, I would rate them as "okay". We stayed one night in the junior suite, which was run down - new mattresses are needed. The room was roomy enough for the 4 of us. If you want luxury, stay elsewhere.

It is far from town but close to the Arenal Hanging bridges.
We had a car and our plan was to drive to town for dinner, but once it started raining we ate dinner at the hotel because we didn't want to drive up and down the long road to the hotel. Dinner was enjoyable.

Free hot breakfast buffet was to be available at 6:30 but it was not ready till 7, and we had to leave at 7 for an excursion. (Cold cereal and coffee/juice was available)

  • Liked — View and wildlife
  • Disliked — BEDS
  • Stayed July 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank GetPacking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
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Bryn Mawr, PA
Level Contributor
49 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 July 2008

I traveled from the east coast to the west in Costa Rica and if you want to stay in a place that you could find in Florida this is the place. Rooms are big and clean, AC works well, and floors are tile and big sliding glass doors. The restaurant is al a cart and about 3-4 times the cost of eating in town and if you want local food you can not get it unless you go someplace else. Food is good but not worth the high prices they charge. The volcano is basically across the street, however a few years back the flow had changed and you can no longer see anything but smoke and a light glow at night. If you want to see it you need to take a cab around the back side of the mountain. Cab drivers are always willing to work on the price of a fare… just asked them. If you stay here I would recommend going over to the hot springs.. about 20 minutes away.. Take the evening package it’s a better deal and how long can you really sit in hot water? Note that the springs are a lot like this hotel.. a beer is $ 5.00 or a days pay for the locals. Beautiful country but very Americanized…the eastern coast is truly the best part .. not only is it a natural beauty but it offers more of a central American feel, the cost of zip lines, tours, food and activities is a lot lower and the people are very friendly.

Stayed July 2006
Helpful?
Thank Jonnathan64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ann Arbor, MI
Level Contributor
25 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 June 2008

This hotel was a little run down, but it had beautiful views of the volcano from the location. A spacious and well furnished patio area just outside the building was a great place from which to enjoy the scenery. You can also enjoy the view from your room through the panoramic windows.

The hotel is a little far from the city, but the staff will help you get taxis and book activities at the same cost as the rates posted at the attractions.

The rooms were a little shabby for the price, which is why I did not rate this hotel higher. Still, I highly recommend it for the sheer beauty of the location.

  • Stayed February 2008, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank wajlee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
soulfit
Level Contributor
19 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 June 2008

This was the best ! It was so peaceful, the jungle surrounded us. The staff was so nice and helpful. We will return with our family next month.

  • Stayed April 2007, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank soulfit
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tallahassee, Florida
Level Contributor
131 reviews
34 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 May 2008

Spent one night only, quiet area with great view but...hard beds, needs much updating and cleaning. Had to get clean sheets for one of our queen beds and change them ourselves for $139 would not stay here again. Food was OK. Should of drove further and checked out others down the road.

  • Liked — Volcano view
  • Disliked — Run down property
  • Stayed May 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank luv2dive2222
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
UK
Level Contributor
31 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 25 April 2008

The hotel is miles away from anything else you want to see in the area, not all tours will even pick you up from there and it's a $18 taxi ride into La Fortuna and $18 back again! It's definitely not the place to be without a car.

The lodge has an old school camp feel to it and seemed very run down and in need of a major refurb.

My junior suite was old and damp and most of the window panes didn't close properly leaving only an insect net between me and the outside world. This was great when the animal and insect noises started in the dark and then a 3 hour rain storm kept me awake in the early hours.

The food in the restaurant was terrible, as was the service but you have little choice in this remote location.

The hotel did have a great view of the volcano but as it rained most of the time I was there so I barely saw it. Although admittedly I did see some red lava flow at night, which was impressive, but I didn't see enough to improve my opinion of the hotel.

  • Liked — night time volcano view
  • Disliked — everything else
  • Stayed April 2008, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank Mel32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 March 2008

The Arenal Lodge is situated with an outstanding view of the Arenal Volcano -- the grounds have quite a bit of wildlife and Arenal Bridges is fairly close by.

In previous years the hotel's restaurant has been quite good, this year it was abominable -- we ate there once and then every other night we went into town for dinner -- a 20 minute drive.

I reccommend that you take the forest trail and I also reccommend the Arenal Bridges tours as there is quite a bit to be seen there as well. After dark, as in all of rural Costa Rica, take a flashlight and walk only where you can see well to either side of the trail as the Fer-de-lance and Bushmaster tend to be ambush hunters along the edges of trails.

The two hot tubs are wonderful after dark....

Bottom Line -- Avoid the restaurant.

  • Liked — Views and Location
  • Disliked — Restaurant
  • Stayed March 2008, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank NaturePhotographer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Arenal Lodge

Property: Arenal Lodge
Address: 200 meters NW from the Arenal Lake dam, Arenal Volcano National Park, La Fortuna de San Carlos 1250, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Arenal Volcano National Park > La Fortuna de San Carlos
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#12 Spa Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — Arenal Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 46
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Arenal Lodge provides guests with the excitement of staying in an authentic rainforest lodge with breathtaking panoramic views of Costa Rica’s famous Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. Guests will enjoy a casual and relaxed rustic lodge setting with the added value of a complimentary breakfast daily. Located on 2000-acres of beautiful tropical rainforest, the lodge is situated near Arenal Volcano National Park. The lodge is surrounded by rainforest - housing hundreds of exotic birds, small animals and the beautiful tropical flowers and trees of Costa Rica. and is its own local tourist attraction due to its exclusive location with breathtaking panoramic views of Arenal Volcano and Lake Arenal. The lodge features a full service restaurant with local and international cuisine, gift shop, three heated outdoor Jacuzzis, an infinite edge swimming pool, walking trails, a butterfly garden, horseback riding, a game room and outdoor playground for children, fitness room, sauna, and free wireless high speed internet access. Guest rooms and suites feature cable TV, telephone, coffee maker, clock radio, and all have private baths. Complimentary crib and wheel chair are available on request. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Arenal Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Arenal Lodge Costa Rica/La Fortuna De San Carlos

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