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Los Lagos Hotel Spa & Resort
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Reviews (1,605)
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Reviewed 15 April 2010

This resort had beautiful grounds, GREAT pool for kids, natural springs (that I found to be dirty), cool exhibits (alligators/butterfly garden/frogs/ants) - rooms were generally clean and large but outdated. We had a Superior room. Breakfast was really good here and the kids generally had a great time here. It was centerally located but crowded. Without a doubt, I would recommend staying at the Nayara (www.arenalnayara.com) over this property.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with family
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Thank diggernut
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 April 2010

We stayed for 5 days with our 12 and 6 y/o in a premium room. The views are spectacular but we had some issues on our first day. The card key did not work, the phone was broken, the a/c didn't work, the refrig was inoperable. Everything was taken care of quickly except the a/c problem lingered for 2.5 days culminating with it leaking water all over our belongings. Sigh. The rooms need updating - the beds were old and falling apart. Bring your own coffee and filters (cone-type) or buy packets from the front desk. There are ferel but nice cats roaming the grounds. They walk right in your room if you leave the door open. My kids loved it but we hated their crying at the front door at 5am. The pools were nice & the kids loved the slides. Breakfast was just ok - same things each day. We had a car and went in to town often for eating and shopping. I would go back IF they updated the rooms. Will post a trip review here on the arenal forum, if you want more details.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled with family
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Thank laurenyulan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 April 2010

This hotel would be fantastic if you have young children or teenagers. I was travelling with my girlfriend and am in my late 20s and this was not a hotel for me. (It is worth mentioning that you have to wear a horrible plastic wristband for the duration of your stay)

The staff vary from excellent (on the bar and in the restaurant) to poor (reception). The rooms are large whilst the views are fantastic from the room. There is just very little to do, sitting in the pool bar swimming and drinking gets a little boring after a while and the complex goes quiet very early. If you like adventure then go elsewhere, if you love relaxing by the pool then this is perfect.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank bluearmyMexicoCity
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 April 2010

I chose Los Lagos because of the on-site thermal springs and the good reviews here. I liked that we were away from the town, which wasn't especially "happening", and yet not as far as the Observatory Lodge or a few of the other nicer hotels. We took the $7 taxi (each way) to town one day and found the restaurants just as spendy as the hotel restaurants and the service wasn't as good as at the hotel.
My family was in room 203 which was at the top of the hill. Yes, we used the shuttle most of the time to get there from the desk and pools, but never had to wait more than a minute or two and the driver was very friendly. We walked it uphill one time, but had no problems walking down (and across the hanging bridge) two or three times a day.
Our room was plenty big as there was a trundle bed that pulled out from the foot of the bed, and they seemed to put the familes together in the same building as we saw none of the big bus tour people around our building. As is universal in Costa Rica, you are requested to put ALL paper products in the garbage can NOT in the john. This helps with the septic processing or whatever, and we got used to it pretty quickly. Yes, we saw a few roaches, but this is the tropics, so not surprising. We did not keep any food in the room although there was a small fridge. We drank tap water the whole trip and had no problems at all. Leave your tip the first night if you are staying more than one night and you will get better service.
The pools were the icing on the cake. Four temperate (chlorinated) pools with fantastic slides you simply couldn't find in the US. One goes underground and my 9 year old son must have ridden it 20 times even though the sign says for ages 15 and over. There's no lifeguards, but it was easy to keep an eye on the kids because of the different levels on the hill where the pools are situated. The 7-9 thermal pools are various levels of heat and the swim-up bar even has a slide of it's own that I enjoyed (and I generally hate water slides).
We mostly ate at the wet bar (Lemnos) and the portions were such that my husband and I could share a plate. The french fries are amazing, I don't know what they do to them. The red sauce spaghetti was the only thing I would recommend you avoid unless you like chef-boy-ardee. The local specialities were wonderful, the ceviche especially, and the fruity drinks were wonderful. The staff at that bar were really fun, singing and joking around, and the service very fast.
We ate only one dinner at the restaurant, mostly because of the price, but again you can split a plate because the portions are so generous. My son said (and we all agreed) it was the best cheeseburger he's ever had.
We had all our breakfasts at the main restaurant (included in our price). The menu varied from day to day enough to keep it interesting. The earlier you get there, the shorter the line for omelettes and pancakes, but that's no surprise. It's open-aire so the birds were flying through and picking up the crumbs. Very fun!!
We loved the nature "center" at the hotel with the best frog pond because you were in the open room with the frogs and had to look for them, they're not in an aquarium, but right at your feet!! Similarly, we felt no need to see any other butterfly garden after this one, especially if you go at dusk, the morphos will be landing on your camera as you try to photograph them. There is also the chain-link fenced in alligator pond and the disturbingly low-walled pen with a caiman or crocodile in it. I fear more for the safety of the animal from what some idiot might try to throw at him to make him move. We also enjoyed the leaf-cutter ant exhibit. All these things seem to be at the foot of one leg of the hotel's own zip line which costs extra and wasn't as much through the forest as some other canopy tours in the area. But we didn't go on it, so discard my comments if you wish.
We did, however, do the horseback ride up to the volcano lookout which was GREAT and totally worth the money. The horses were gentle and the guide was very friendly (Alfredo). I'm not petite and I had no problem riding. It was my daughter (7th birthday that day) and (9 yr old) son's first time on a horse and even with minimal instructions they had no problems even when the animals picked it up to a trot or canter. We mostly went through the pastures on the sides of the volcano but also through a lot of jungle and around the lake where a hotel was until an eruption in 2001.
We were going to do a river float tour which we cancelled from our itinerary because the hotel was so much fun just to be there and we liked the pools so much. The only words of caution I can give is the common sense that you are in a foreign country, some of the staff didn't speak great English, but most were excellent, learn a few key phrases in Spanish and make a little effort. The other thing is that the sun rises early here, and sets early: the pools are open late and there's plenty of siesta time in the afternoon. The gardens are mind-blowing and everytime you look up, even if it's clouded in, you realize you are on the side of a volcano which is pretty cool.

  • Stayed: March 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank Pennconsota
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 April 2010

My husband and I and our 24 year old son stayed at Los Lagos March 12 - 14th. We stayed in room 219, a Superior room which had two Queen beds and regular pillows and we found the beds to be very comfortable. There is also a small refrigerator and a coffee maker. They do not supply you with coffee so pick some up on your way or you can buy it from the front desk in 4 cup packets for a dollar. The rooms are very simpe but are much larger than standard hotel rooms so we weren't tripping over each other. Our room was very clean. There is only one reading lamp per bed meaning only one side of the bed gets the benefit of a light. My husband brought his little book light so that worked out fine for us. On the opposite wall there is a long counter top with cabinets below for your luggage and other items, plus there is a cabinet to hang your clothes. There is an average sized Flat Screen TV at one end of the cabinets. The air conditioner dripped when first started up so don't put anything important on the counter under it. Once it had been running awhile this was no longer a problem. The shower is large with good water pressure. There was also a mirror in the main room which was handy for allowing others into the bathroom and there is a plug close by for blow drying your hair.

One thing of note, you have to use your key card to turn on the AC which means it will not work when you're out and have your key in tow, unless you get more than one key...hint hint. We needed to leave ours on sometimes depending on our outside activity as it was quite hot when we were there. Upon check-in the front desk will give you beach towels for use at the pool.

There is a nice sitting area outside each unit although it is not private. We saw lots of birds in front of our room and from the inner resort road, such as Chestnut Toucans and Parrots in the trees. We were also lucky and saw the Volcano in full view for two days which when it's not obscured by clouds, it dominates the landscape and is a beautiful backdrop to their plantings. The grounds are gorgeous and make sure you get to their garden preserve area next to the Restaurant where there is more wildlife such as numerous types of Lizards. We also saw Howler Monkey's there. It is a large property so to get around you can dial the resort shuttle and they will pick you up to take you wherever you want to go on the property. The pools are fabulous with slides and the Hot Spring pool was great also with a slide and a swim up bar. The bar serves decent food and the Buffet Breakfast in the morning was very good and had plenty of variety. We also found all the staff to be friendly and helpful.

The only thing I didn't like was you have to wear a plastic bracelet because they don't want people sneaking in to use their hot springs I guess. Other than that we found Hotel Los Lagos to be very very pretty and a nice place to spend our down time, plus it's very quiet for sleeping!

I did not include pics of the rooms because their website represents them very well. We chose to stay there for the large rooms and the beautiful grounds and hot springs, so we were very happy with the outcome.

  • Stayed: March 2010
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3  Thank KansasPVgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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