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“Breathtaking”
Review of El Remanso Lodge

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El Remanso Lodge
Ranked #3 of 41 Hotels in Osa Peninsula
Certificate of Excellence
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Lubbock, Texas
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Breathtaking”
Reviewed 21 July 2014

This was a beautiful paradise. I place set in the middle of nowhere. I loved our tour guides (Gera was awesome!) Here's the thing though, El Remanso is not for people seeking a comfortable air conditioned experience. There is limited electricity, as the compound supplies their own. Also, it is extremely humid, but, seriously, amazing. We went for our honeymoon, and we are glad we didn't spend the entire time there (because of the humidity and exposure to the elements - it is much more of an adventure-seeker place) Also, the wildlife can be a little frightening. Pay attention to your guides! This was definitely a vacation we will remember our entire lives. Loved every second.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
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1 Thank BeccaLubbock_Texas
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English first
San Rafael, California
Level 3 Contributor
12 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 July 2014

We spent 11 days this summer in Costa Rica and our family is so pleased that 6 of them were at El Remanso Lodge. If you are seeking to experience the Rain Forest, with comfort and class - then I highly recommend this place.

It starts with the locale - on the Osa Peninsula - a private reserve set in old growth rain forest.
As you make your way on the ride down a bumpy gravel road you begin seeing wildlife and get the sense you're in for something special, a real experience with nature.

When we arrived we were guided to the Dining Room, I say room loosely as it's open air on 3 sides - looking right out into the jungle, but that's part of the magic of this place... the lodge was build into the rain forest. It's almost as if El Remanso belongs in this place. The dining room is attached to the kitchen and has a charming bar “Los Encantitos”. A few steps away from the Dining Room is the delightful pool with a deck and lounges that have a great view into the jungle with the ocean beyond. Behind the pool is Casa Poniente, a building with 6 rooms, four on the first floor and two suites on the top floor.

After a delicious lunch (see my comments about the food below) we were escorted off to our lodging. We had chosen La Vainilla - a 2-story bungalow down the trail from the center of the lodge. Our bags had already arrived at the steps to our temporary home and we entered to explore. The downstairs has two large beds, with it's own bathroom and separate shower - all screened (which our son was very pleased about). There was a nice, small deck off the downstairs with two adirondack chairs facing the valley - with green foliage giving way to the Pacific Ocean in the distance.

As we climbed up the stairs with the hewn wooden railings I felt as if I had entered either a movie or a dream. Before me was a large space, open air on three sides. There were 2 hammocks hanging in each corner of the room - a comfortable sitting area with chairs and a table between them.
In the back center of the room stands a beautiful King bed with mosquito netting creatively tied up above, with the classy touch of tropical flowers on the pillow as well as affixed to the netting in front. On the side of the room is the bathroom area - it's half walls providing privacy but still allowing you to feel in the jungle. One of my favorite features - you can shower while looking out to sea and the jungle. It sounds so simple but wow, what an experience.

We also toured several of the other rooms - the smaller single story bungalows looked wonderful as well, each with their own deck. These rooms were screened with wide screen doors that open to the jungle. I would have no hesitation recommending any of the bungalows. The rooms that are poolside are also nice, though smaller. They each have a patio with a hammock to enjoy the breeze outside. For families who would prefer being near the pool or the dining room - this may be a good choice, though we prefer to be away from the noise and activity around the lodge.

Jumping back on the trail beside our bungalow and heading downhill, a 15-minute walk brings you to the beach.... a beautiful beach! There are signs and you are cautioned not to attempt to swim in the surf here - rip tides are apparently strong and severe. But we did safely wade in the waves and spend minutes on several days watching the waves roll in and out. A treat at the beach were pairs of Scarlet Macaws that must make their home near the tree-line on the Coast. Wonderful to watch in the trees and in flight (but their squawking belies their beautiful colors).

Walking to the left about 10 minutes we traced the path of a small creek up to a waterfall that was some 35-40 feet tall. It was a blast to experience the 'hydro-shower'. This waterfall would be the last of four that we would Rappel down days later as part of that adventure tour.

After the exhilarating hike back up (it is uphill and is a good workout) we head back to the dining room for dinner. Lodging at El Remanso includes 3 meals a day. And the food is good, no I mean really good! Breakfast is plentiful with several choices each morning - you can also select and combine simple dishes like eggs, hash browns and toast. The fruit pancakes (I chose Pineapple) come not with the wimpy tiny cubes of fruit I've experienced before but with big, juicy pieces throughout. The fresh juice each morning was amazing. I recommend trying the traditional Costa Rican breakfast with the Gallo Pinto, Tico Hash Browns, Plantains and toast.

At the end of breakfast you are brought the lunch and dinner menus to select your choices for that day. Lunches were equally delicious - with multiple choices each day. I believe my favorite was the Burrito with tender, tasty beef with just the right compliment of additions topped off with a savory sauce. I had that more than one day! The food is plenty but not so much you have to stuff yourself or leave food to waste. But save room for desert - lunch and dinner both conclude with desert. From juicy pineapple sliced to a fresh fruit compote to cheesecake to (my favorite) Tres Leche Cake.

And the dinners - dinner was a palette pleaser each night. My favorite had to be the Beef in the Red Wine Reduction Sauce. I love my sauces and the cooks at El Remanso earn an A+. Each dinner you had the choice of two entrees - Pork, Fish, Beef, Chicken and vegetarian (in fact I understand you could have vegetarian or other special dietary consideration each meal). And yes, as I mentioned before - save room for desert.
The bar provides a choice of standard beverages along with several special cocktails. The Pina Colada is very good but my wife loved the Coco Loco. I enjoyed a delicious Mojito (with freshly crushed mint) on the deck of the pool one afternoon. My son enjoyed non-alcoholic versions of the Pina Colada and Coco Loco. The bar also serves fresh fruit smoothies and shakes.

Activities at El Remanso enhance your experience in the Rain Forest - we chose the Adventure Package (their website features several packages with activities, etc). We did the Long Hike, Bird Watching Tour, Night HIke, Canopy Tour (1 Zip Line & Rapelling Down), Waterfall Rappelling, and Kayak in Mangroves. We enjoyed each activity but would have to say our favorite was the Waterfall Rappelling - a very safe but adventurous experiences where you and your party rappel down four creek-waterfalls on the property. The guides were thorough in their instruction and never felt unsafe.

The long hike with El Remanso guide Gerrardo was also great - he is such a great guide, knowledgeable but with a great personality that is passionate about nature and very good about communicating and teaching. We saw sloth, monkeys, leaf-cutter ants and spiders - learned about the Garlic Tree and Alligator trees and the amazing evidence of the Walking Palm.

The adventures, the lodgings, the food, the beautiful jungle all make this place special - and the icing on the cake is the people. We so enjoyed interactions with every staff member (from the gardener who showed us that Hummingbird nest one day) to the dining hall staff, to housekeeping and the managers - El Remanso really helped to make our visit a special one.

You can tell I am more than satisfied with our stay at El Remanso Lodge. If you, your partner or family enjoy adventure - but wish to experience it in comfort, with great meals; this place will not disappoint. We will remember this trip for years to come - and are already thinking about when we might return.

P.S. We are thrilled to experience such a wonderful lodge but equally pleased that El Remanso continues to earn the highest marks for their sustainability. So we can enjoy a visit to the Rainforest while causing minimal impact to these wonderful animals and plants. That is important to our family!

Room Tip: If you're up for maximum jungle living - definitely stay in La Vainilla. If you'd prefer sc...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
7 Thank travelerchetd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Jacksonville Beach, Florida
Level 3 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 July 2014

I can't say enough positive things about El Remanso. El Remanso was literally the most peaceful and wonderful of vacations! Adriana and her husband have taken their family ecolodge and made it an all-inclusive destination worth visiting. My husband and I recently spent a week in the deluxe La Guinda cabin, and left feeling like we could have spent even more time exploring the area! We've already talked about finding a time to return (that never happens for me since I like to explore new places!).

The cabin was comfortable, spacious, furthest away from the rest of the lodge and very private. The bathroom was well equipped and the large mosaic bathtub was dreamy! We loved waking up early to the sounds of the howler monkeys as well as watching spider and capuchin monkeys come through the flowering trees surrounding La Guinda multiple times a day. It was marvelous to see so closely all the rainforest creatures in their natural habitats, without feeling like we were disturbing them at all.

The staff was phenomenal! We left feeling like family and friends instead of mere guests due to the care, concern and helpfulness of all the staff members. Julie and Marco went above and beyond to help us plan our activities to get the best combination of adventure and relaxation. The guides were extremely well educated and clearly love their region and work. All of the waiters, gardeners, and housekeepers were thorough and friendly - even going out of their way to point out wildlife that we would have missed! And the kitchen staff were truly masters at cooking! The food was amazing! Fresh, light and cooked to perfection. We thoroughly miss the delightful fruit smoothies (Carlos makes them best!).

It is evident that the mission of El Remanso - to leave a positive impact - extends from conserving the untouched beauty of the rainforest to training their staff and guides excellently and finally leaves every guest with a lingering remembrance of a beautiful slice of paradise and the encouragement to make a positive difference when returning home!

Room Tip: The deluxe cabins were secluded and roomy. Keep in mind that luxuries like A/C and windows don't...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Sylaria
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Aspen, Colorado
Level 3 Contributor
14 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 July 2014

I just got back from a ten day trip to Costa Rica, including five nights at El Remanso Lodge. My stay, with my 14 and 16 year old kids was wonderful. Every staff member went above and beyond to make our experience terrific. The guides were enthusiastic, engaged and inspiring (you wouldn't know that they do the same thing 100's of times a year). And, the FOOD! Wow! I'd like to go back just for the Tuna night. Every meal was incredible. Thank you to the entire group. We met some wonderful people while we were there: in the pool, on the trails, in the dining room. El Remanso is a very special place.

Room Tip: Bring ear plugs (the howlers and toads are quite active!)
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled with family
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Helpful?
Thank wayfarerwendy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Castle Rock, Colorado
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 July 2014

My husband & I stayed at El Remanso for four days. If you love nature, wildlife, birds & a beautiful setting, there can be no better place than this. The lodge & the cottages are nestled right in the Rainforest without disturbing the beautiful & wild location. All cottages over-look the Pacific ocean. You will have Toucans, monkeys, reptiles & wildlife at your door. They have numerous trails to hike and numerous activities for everyone. The staff is outstanding and the guided tours are unforgettable. In spite of being a remote lodge, the meals were excellent with fresh fruit, vegetables. The owners are dedicated to preserving the Rainforest & its wildlife. It was an amazing experience.

Room Tip: There are not many cottages. It is a small resort, but all cottages are beautiful.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Cindy V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Worthing, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
59 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 June 2014

I don't have anything other than unreserved praise for this lodge and all the people who look after their guests with such care and attention. We stayed in four hotels in Costa Rica recently, two of which were satisfactory and the third was superb. The fourth, El Remanso, is beyond superb so it is 5 stars plus! We have travelled quite a bit around the world and I have to say that the Osa Peninsula is somewhere very very special, a place I'll remember for as long as I live. The lodge is sited about 40 minutes from the airstrip at Puerto Jimenez in a rather remote and unspoilt area, with great access to the rainforest and the amazing animals that live there. In addition the lodge has access to the beach on the Pacific coast with its wonderful rocks pools and no-one else in sight! The entire experience over four nights was incredible and with hindsight we wish we had cut Arenal from our itinerary and stayed here for a full week. We just loved it all. Very many thanks to everyone at El Remanso for making it such a wonderful visit.

Room Tip: We stayed in El Lucero which is one of the cabins slightly down the slope from the main lodge. It ha...
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Grant W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Virginia Beach, Virginia
Level 2 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 20 June 2014 via mobile

My husband and I stayed 5 nights at El Remanso and had an unforgettable time. Each day was filled with something new and exciting. The hikes and the zip line/tree rappelling with Reynaldo were awesome. He's so full of knowledge and we felt like we were hiking with our friend. The restaurant and the cabins are situated right in the middle of the forest and perfect for wildlife viewing. I do have to mention that we got there right when the bugs started to arrive so bring plenty of good bug repellant and long socks. I hear the bugs normally aren't bad, but I guess at the start of the rainy season they are. We did get eaten up a bit, but it definitely didn't take away from my amazing experience.

We saw howler monkeys, spider monkeys, and white faced monkeys feeding on trees right along side the restaurant and also right next to our cabin, on several different occasions! We also saw the squirrel monkeys on the drive in. The Toucans and Macaws are always around and so many other beautiful birds and reptiles. If you aren't woken up by the howler monkeys at 530 AM, the squawking Macaws will likely get you up! I even found the bats charming and I could hear them every day behind our cabin. If you want privacy and the best wildlife viewing and an ocean view, opt for La Guinda! The other cabins sound wonderful, also. Our cabin was surrounded by screens to let the breeze in and I would find myself just lying in bed listening to the ocean and the all the different wild sounds around us. You see so much while there, but you hear even more!

The totally secluded beach is breathtaking. There is a short hike from the beach to an awesome waterfall, which was another highlight and is not to be missed. The food was wonderful every single day and the drinks were fabulous, also. I could go on and on about so many other fantastic memories here. I've been to many other amazing places in Costa Rica and I think this experience is most memorable so far. The entire staff and the owners, Adriana and Daniel, could not have made us feel more welcome. You feel like family when here. They even went above and beyond to get a surfboard rental for my husband who had fun surfing one day with two of the friendly bartenders. There are beaches to surf at about 20 min or so away.

I can't say enough and hope to return in the near future. If you want to get off the grid and feel one with nature and either relax or have some adventure, you must stay at El Remanso!

Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Dionne C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about El Remanso Lodge

Property: El Remanso Lodge
Address: Near Corcovado National Park, 8203, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Osa Peninsula
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Green Hotel in Osa Peninsula
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3 star — El Remanso Lodge 3*
Number of rooms: 9
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Also Known As:
El Remanso Hotel Osa Peninsula
El Remanso Osa
El Remanso Lodge Costa Rica/Osa Peninsula

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