We stayed two nights. Our family included a little 3-year old boy. Our room was cute - it was essentially a hotel room with a cabin-like structure built around it. Our room had two double beds, one small desk, a bathroom (no tub, just shower but with hot water!) and sink. There was also a small closet, refrigerator and coffeemaker. All items worked properly, were in good condition and clean. The power went out once while we were there. It came back on within two hours of reporting it. The front door only locks with the key whether your inside or out. The door has a habit of opening if it isn't locked (it doesn't stay closed very well.) It wasn't a big deal to us but I thought I should note this for others. The room itself was clean - not luxury but highly adequate - comparable to perhaps a Marriott Fairfield Inn room. both in quality and price. We thought the price was very reasonable.
The one restaurant was very reasonably priced and good quality - some dishes were GREAT.
The swimming pool is very small compared to average resort standards but adequate for a small child. We avoided the one hot spring b/c a) it wasn't that hot, b) the ducks were swimming in it (duck waste = no thanks) and c) it was also fairly small. We instead spent time at the Tabacon Hot Springs which, while spendy, was a fantastic time. The grounds of the hotel are very pretty and very well-kempt. Our little boy loved running around, looking at the fish in the pond and played on their little playground. Playground was a bonus that included three types of swings, a seesaw and slide.
The desk is not made for working if you need to work (I did.) There are four chairs and a small table on the little patio/deck next to your front door that served adequately when I needed to work. Wireless Internet was no problem and a decent speed (I was able to use Internet phone.) The phone only works to call the front desk. It does NOT call outside of the hotel so I bought calling cards that I couldn't use. There is a phone at the front desk for outside calls. FYI
The employees were very helpful, kind and always smiling. The front desk folks were especially accommodating. We used the spa - prices were reasonable, esp with the special sale they were having at the time. However, while the massages were good, unless something has changed, we would not recommend the man/pedi. For the mani/pedi, they shorted us time, were not thorough with the cleaning or exfoliation and the color was unevenly applied. Plus, you had to lie down for the entire service which is uncomfortable when doing the pedi. Not a good experience. Hot stone massages were very relaxing, comfortable and a great pressure.
The surrounding area felt safe. It was a less than ten-minute drive into the main Fortuna area (cab = approx $15 one way) and about 15 minutes to the Arenal park entrance (cab = approx $20-25 one way.) Cab can be expensive, if you find a good rate on a rental car, we highly recommend renting. The area is easy to drive in. You'll want a 4x4 if you think you'll spend a lot of time in the volcano park areas as the dirt roads are long and bumpy. We didn't have problems getting child seats.
We would recommend this hotel to friends and family. If you're looking for something more luxurious the Tabacon was a definitely a comfy, luxury stay for us. Alternately, if you are looking for something much more "bare bones" in amenities and service, Arenal Observatory Lodge is a decent choice. El Silencio was a very delightful mid-range stay.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hotel El Silencio del Campo besides featuring a set of swimming pools, hot springs and spa, also offers its guests 23 individual villas with a small patio right outside facing the majestic Arenal Volcano, surrounded by colorful and lush gardens, that gives a natural sensation to your experience. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel El Silencio Del Campo Costa Rica/La Fortuna De San Carlos