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“Titoku - simply nicer than Baldi”

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Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa
Certificate of Excellence
Aurora, IL
1 review
“Titoku - simply nicer than Baldi”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 March 2010

On my business trips to La Fortuna/Arenal a regular stop is at one of the hot spring facilities after dinner. Knowing Baldi since 11 years (and witnessing the continuous decline in attractivity, service quality and tranquility) and skipping Tabacon because of the ridiculous price management I switched to Ecothermales (which I still recommend!). My last trip in March offered a new experience: I detected Titoku ("Water from the Gods") hot springs. It is run by Hotel Kioro but open to the general public as well. I called reservation ahead (excellent attention by Giselle Urbina) and booked the 5:00 pm to 8:00pm night session. I was charged $ 24 and this included entrance, towel and locker (excellent value!!). Service was fast, effective and friendly. No waiting lines and 5 min later I was soaking in the hot tubs. The design is a cascade-like line of 8 pools descending organically down the slope. The thermal water is quite hot in the first pool on top of the cascade but becomes very enjoyable once you descend to the lower pools. I was pretty much by myself the whole time and had a very relaxing moment. Soft illumination of the pools and the surrounding tropical vegetation is adding to the magical touch of the place. Great place and definitively worth checking-out.

Downside: the location next to Baldi spoils a little bit the tranquility of the place because the sonic contamination from Baldi's mega sound equipment is unavoidable. And the place could be a bit more spacious. It is quite narrow from the top to the bottom.

Overall a very pleasant addition to the Arenal hot springs industry and highly recommended.

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled on business
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Thank thomlinsonscott
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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lbcooka
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 36 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 March 2010

This hotel has the most beautiful view of the volcano in all of arenal. We moved to this hotel at 3 am in the morning after finding bedbugs at tabacon. We quickly changed hotels and enjoyed this one immediately. Staff is nice, rooms are decent but the view is really why this hotel is pricey. The hotel rooms are nothing special...they are large...great shower but old jacuzzi that i wouldn't want to actually go in. The grounds are beautiful and the free breakfast and internet is key! I would recommend this hotel to anyone looking to really enjoy the view of the volcano in a decent hotel.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank chicagogal100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
NYC
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 February 2010

My boyfriend and I stayed here from 12/29/09 - 1/2/10. We had an AMAZING time. The location of the Arenal Kioro couldn't be better. The views from your room are incredible. Imagine laying in bed and waking up to see the Arenal Volcano. The room had a jacuzzi with a view too! Which was great to watch to the NYE fireworks!

The grounds are beautiful and I can't say enough about the hot springs on site. When every hot springs outside the hotel is completely booked, you have your very own hot springs right at the hotel. The paths around the hotel are quiet and beautiful. Lots of different plants & flowers.

We also booked one of the couples packages at the spa. The spa was very relaxing & massage was excellent. We also got a body scrub & wrap,after the massage as well as a floral bath. Highly recommended.

The service at the hotel is impeccable. The staff is very friendly and helpful and the front desk crew is great! Carlos (I believe that was his name) is an absolute pleasure. He got in touch with a tour group that failed to pick us up (we did not book that trip with the hotel) and also helped us choose another tour when we had spare time.

Had a great time here and would love to go back!!!

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank cheleann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Alnwick, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
59 reviews
45 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 February 2010

Well what more can I say than other reviewers? We arrived after a fairly long journey from Monteverde and were treated to beautiful clear views of the volcano from the lake. On check-in to the hotel we were offered a rather nice glass of wine and had a stroll around the gardens while waiting about 15 mins for our room to be ready. We were taken down the hill to our block and were absolutely blown away by the view of the volcano and gardens which greeted us from the huge sliding glass windows. The room was gorgeous, with 2 seating areas and balconies, 2 double beds, hot tub and gorgeous bathroom with rainfall shower. A couple of minutes into arrival we also had some Heliconia flowers delivered which was a nice touch!

While I got unpacked and took in the view my husband went to check out the gym facilities and was amazed to be confronted by a 3 foot black snake which reared up at him! The attendant was rather hesitant about getting rid of it with a yard brush and hubby was just miffed that he didn't have his camera with him! We had a couple of games of pool and table tennis whilst there - these facilities are Ok but could do with sprucing up. We didn't try out the pool but it looked very inviting.

We decide to take advantage of the free Titoku hot springs at a nearby hotel and got the hotel shuttle down there. We had a lovely time, sipping cocktails in the hot water and just came out before rain started around 6pm. Unfortunately the afternoon was slightly marred by the fact that the hotel forgot to come back to pick us up (with no apology), but the chap on reception at the hot springs soon sorted the problem out. We tried the hot tub in the room out which was a great way to relax after a busy day sightseeing.

We had dinner twice in the hotel which was on the expensive side but very nice with excellent service. Buffet breakfast was also really nice with your own omelette /scrambled eggs cooked to your liking. We had a couple of private tours while there to the hanging bridges and volcano hike - both very good.

We had a very early pickup when checking out (5am) and as it was raining hard asked reception to send a car down to get us from our room (we were in one of the farthest rooms away from the main part of the hotel). 2 phone calls later and we were still waiting! In the end our transfer driver came to get us and had to wait about 20 mins for us to checkout - I think the guy on reception was still half asleep!

All in all this was by far the best hotel room we have ever had and we have travelled extensively. Would love to go back!

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank boydsmad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Perth, Australia
Level Contributor
33 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 7 January 2010

My partner and I loved this hotel. The view was second to none and the grounds were immaculate. The natural hot tubs were great. The hot tub in the room was also very nice and clean. Bed was nice and had a lovely towel swan on it every day. The free facial was so relaxing. I would reccommed this hotel to anyone looking for a splurge. We got room service one night and the food was very good.

  • Stayed January 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank huskerabroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Orange County, California
Level Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 January 2010

We were treated to a wonderful two night stay at this hotel. Our travel to Arenal included a boat ride across the lake to La Fortuna which offered us spectacular views of the area. We also we greeted with clear skies and picture perfect view of the entire volcano. The views from the room were amazing. The rooms are very large, well appointed and perfectly arranged to allow you to view the volcano from the chairs, bed or in-room hot tub. The grounds of the hotel property are lovely. We really enjoyed the hot springs.

Service by all the staff was exceptional. We enjoyed spending a couple of hours by the pool one morning. We could not locate any towels, but a gardener saw us sitting on the lounge chairs and brought us towels. We had an early morning departure and the front desk manager opened the gift shop for our group which was much appreciated by all.

The restaurant was our only negative due to the noise level. It offered beautiful views, but because of the design it was extremely noisy. You had to shout to talk to others at the table. For the high prices on the food and wine we would have enjoyed a more pleasing experience and food could have been better.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank NewportBeacher
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Markham, Canada
Level Contributor
214 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 295 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 December 2009

Our next stop was La Fortuna and the Arenal Volcano. (This was a November Anniversary trip for my wife and I and included stays in San Jose, Tortuguero, La Fortuna (Arenal), Monteverde and Manual Antonio, before returning back to San Jose and our flight back to reality. You can find reviews of all of our stays by clicking on my profile and searching these out.) (what a trip!)

I used a local Tour company for all arrangements (hotels and excursions) in advance and for all transportation throughout Costa Rica. “CostaNica Tours” – We were very pleased with their service and drivers. The entire trip went like clockwork – no surprises or disappointments. Highly recommended.

Our driver transported us to La Fortuna, and aside from some scary roads, a bridge with a couple of holes in it (!) and a very cloudy day, the trip was smooth and enjoyable.

Unfortunately upon arrival in La Fortuna, we were greeted with a very overcast day – you could not even see the volcano. But not to worry, we were there for 3 nights and were optimistic we would be treated to great sights.

We were greeted by the Kioro staff and offered a cold drink of our choice while watching a flock of Toucans light about a large tree on the property. The day of our arrival happened to coincide with the date of our anniversary, and I had made some arrangements through our travel co’ for a private chef-inspired dinner that night in the restaurant. We were treated to a beautiful 7 course meal with all the right touches, including roses and chocolates for my wife – it was a great start to our stay here.

The first reaction to the room at the Kioro is to catch your breath – it was huge – with floor to ceiling windows to view the volcano that is literally at your doorstep. There is a separate sitting room with desk, and a hot tub in the room over-looking the Volcano as well. There is a separate bathroom and room with shower.

On our first night I awoke around 5 am and took a peek out our windows and as hoped the clouds had cleared and the early morning light gave way to the Volcano right before us. It was quite a sight – certainly gave you a perspective on the power of the mountain, the majesty, etc. We were treated to a full glorious cloudless day and enjoyed the property with the volcano always as our backdrop.

One important consideration for this hotel/property is the grounds and amenities available to you. Given the proximity to the volcano, the resort takes advantage of the natural hot springs and has designed a beautiful array of pools, hot springs, and waterfalls all surrounded by some of the most colourful and lush gardens we experienced in all of Costa Rica. There is a full serve bar close by so a Margarita or cold beer is within reach to enjoy while watching the occasional puff of steam/smoke and rumbling from the volcano. There was also a great fitness/games room and my wife even took advantage of the on-site spa for a treatment.

Breakfast was included and we enjoyed both menu service and a buffet. The selection was good as was the quality.

We also completed a couple of excursions while at the resort – a guided tour to the volcano and most recent lava field is a must. We completed ours in late afternoon and walked out just as darkness was setting – we were treated to a couple of eruptions while there, so this experience was particularly powerful. We were dropped at the Tabacon Hot Springs for dinner and use of the spa on our way out. This is an excursion we probably wouldn’t repeat – especially given the Arenal Kioro on site hot springs. The next day we also went Waterfall Rapelling with Pure Trek Canyoning and couldn’t recommend it highly enough. There was certainly a moment of intense fear or two when stepping off the platform and dropping down into the canyon below, but the tour group was excellent and we felt safe at all times.

We also managed to get into La Fortuna and enjoy a meal at a local restaurant and do a bit of shopping, etc. We felt safe at all times and our only challenge was narrowing down the many excellent looking local restaurants.

If I were to ‘knock’ the hotel on anything, I would have to comment on the internet being down and one of 2 PC’s was ‘dead’. It also would be great if they ran a shuttle into La Fortuna a couple of times a day – but small concerns in the big picture to be sure.

I believe the Arenal Kioro is one of the more expensive hotels in the area, but they clearly have a lock on ‘location’ as it seems to be the closest hotel to the volcano and the views and gardens, hot springs, etc are all worth the price of staying there. We stayed for 3 nights, and would have enjoyed more.

  • Stayed November 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
5 Thank harvman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa

Property: Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa
Address: San Carlos, 10 km NE of La Fortuna, La Fortuna de San Carlos, Arenal Volcano National Park 21007, Costa Rica (Formerly Arenal Kioro)
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 Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#6 Business Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#6 Luxury Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#11 Romantic Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
#14 Family Hotel in La Fortuna de San Carlos
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 53
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Arenal Kioro offers a fabulous place with a natural viewpoint to the Arenal Volcano. The hotel has 27 acres of undulating land, surrounded by two streams (La Palma and Kioro) with crystalline waters that begin to flow in the Arenal Volcano National Park. It has two paths where plant species are identified. Besides, private thermal springs for our customer's delight. All our suites have:Two terraces with the best panoramic volcano and mountain view, hydro-massage, air conditioning, safe deposit box, minibar, coffee maker, hot water, direct dialing telephone, satellite television, hair dryer, key card, safety locks, internet connections. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Arenal Kioro Hotel La Fortuna De San Carlos
Arenal Kioro Suites & Spa Costa Rica/La Fortuna De San Carlos

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