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“Pura vida”
Review of Ara Ambigua Lodge

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Ara Ambigua Lodge
Reviewed 11 July 2013 via mobile

I had stayed here for two nights while traveling through Costa Rica. It was by far one of the nicer resorts we stayed in. Its location in Sarapachi close to rafting is excellent. The cabin style rooms in the tropical rainforest setting was beautiful. I hope to come back here.

  • Stayed: June 2013
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Thank rtmelho
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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42 - 48 of 156 reviews

Reviewed 2 July 2013

Background: I stayed here with my group of 15 high school students(along with 17 students from other schools, plus chaperons) traveling with EF Tours. I also always travel with the mentality: things are not going to be like they are back home. With this in mind:

If you are going to Costa Rica for ecotourism, this is the place to stay. As others have mentioned, the property is completely engulfed in natural habitat with opportunities to hike trails, view the frog garden, and the caiman lagoon. (Bring bug spray) The property layout is fairly spread out and the rooms vary greatly. I stayed in what the lodge website would call a “superior room” on the hill above the main office/restaurant and it was great. As I had so many kids with me, I got to see a number of other (“standard”) rooms. Down by the pool are cabin-like rooms (which seemed a bit run-down) and hotel-like rooms (clean and plain, but nothing spectacular). Rooms 1-5 are all individual buildings (some split A/B) up the hill from the pool, on the same level as the restaurant/office. These rooms were all very nice. Overall, the rooms vary widely in quality and layout, so if you are concerned, you may be able to see the room at check-in. If planning to walk around after dark (post 7PM), bring a flashlight, especially after 10PM when they shut the property lights off—extremely dark!

The food was excellent—the best we had at a hotel in Costa Rica—though we were with a large group, so our experience may be very different—all of our meals were buffet-style. The TV and AC worked fine. The property did have internet access, but our students had a very difficult time accessing it—the only place they could get it to work was around the main lobby, and even this was dicey. I tried to use the computer in the lobby 3-5 times, got it to connect to the internet once.

Overall, do some investigating into what room you want, and enjoy the natural surroundings!

  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank MiasmaFury
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 June 2013

Positive: helpful, friendly staff, nice garden, good choices in the restaurant, computer in the lobby for public use
Negative: we didn't like the rooms. The first one was all-wooden, which had a certain charme. But according to the webpage and confirmation we expected one of the more modern rooms for that night. The staff was very helpful to get the room changed. But even the more modern rooms could need a touch up and were not really what we expected. However for one night OK.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Swobbi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 May 2013

A comfortable place to stay with a good kitchen. Staff is professional and very kind. A special remark in respect of the bird feeders. The restaurant is a place with open windows and several bird feeders very close to it. While enjoying your (good) meal you can enjoy the view of a lot of different birds and squirrels very close by.
Large and clean rooms in a lovely environment

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled with family
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1  Thank Leendert B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 April 2013

The grounds are beautiful and well kept. Dining area was nice and out in the open. My room was away from the other smaller lodges, but it was very spacious and surrounded by beautiful flora and different birds. Was situated up on a hill, so it had a nice view. There were nice hiking trails. You have to look for them, but they are there. Nice pool area.

  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with friends
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Thank travelerabroad79
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 March 2013

A little bit off from the main road is this lovely hotel. The grounds are excellent for wandering around during which time you can see various frogs,birds,insects and reptiles at close view. Breakfast is a delight from the food point of view, but also the entertainment from the bird feeders. We were in room 37 on the hill above reception which was quiet and had a lovely open view from the veranda. Some of the other rooms near the pool appeared a little closed in.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with family
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Thank Pam B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2013 via mobile

Visited for one night in January en route to Arenal. I love birdwatching and this spot is great if you wanted to make it your base for a birding trip into the rainforest. At breakfast they leave fruit out for the birds attracting some nice species. But for us it was fine for just one night: the rooms are simple and slightly dated decor and the hotel was virtually deserted giving it a slightly eery empty feel. The food was very good both dinner and breakfast were delicious and moresome. The staff are the highlight: so welcoming and friendly, and being family owned and run really shows. Top notch customer service! The gardens are lovely and the pool a welcome refresh after an active day. All in all would recommend using as a base to expore this region, but if you have sensitive hearing the trucks on the main road may still be a little disturbing at night, despite being well set back from the road. Room suggestion: ask for one with a good view!

  • Stayed: January 2013
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Thank Vivrelife
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ara Ambigua Lodge

Address: 400mts Norte de la Iglesia de La Guaria, 2110-1100, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Heredia > Sarapiqui
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #6 of 22 Speciality Lodging in Sarapiqui
Price Range: £69 - £97 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Ara Ambigua Lodge 2.5*
Number of rooms: 44
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Ara Ambigua is a beautiful mountain hotel, located in Sarapiquí in the Northern Zone of Costa Rica just 1.5 hours from San Jose. Here, you can enjoy the peace and exotic beauty of the tropical rainforest. Throughout your stay, you'll have a relaxing and enjoyable experience in this family-owned and run hotel. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ara Ambigua Lodge Costa Rica/Sarapiqui

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