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“A great, relaxing place”
Review of Aguila de Osa

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Aguila de Osa
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Drake Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Calif
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“A great, relaxing place”
Reviewed 28 May 2014

My wife and I just returned from CR, where we spent 4 days (and nights) at Aguila de Osa Inn. I would easily give 5 stars to the Inn, its staff, and its food (the chef is an AMAZING cook). The food, especially the dinners with a choice of freshly-caught fish from Drakes Bay or perfectly cooked meat, was a highlight of our stay. All of the staff were very well-trained and a pleasure to be around.

The only real "issue" was the fact that we were there as the rainy season began (late May), so we were 2 of only 4-6 guests during our stay. That works fine for service on the property, but a number of the activities require more people (or you pay premium prices for boat, guide, etc.) While understandable, this is a risk you face if you go in the off season. That said, the peace and quiet of this beautifully located and well-maintained eco-lodge was well worth the price and the visit. The guides for the rainforest are not of equal ability. Ours, Randall, was exceptionally well-educated and took a great deal of time to explain the flora and fauna of the rainforest. Another couple had a guide who spent far less time and gave far less info. But the Innn was not responsible for that, and I give very high marks to it. Great place!

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Richard H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Escondido, California
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 April 2014 via mobile

This resort sitting above Drake Bay couldn't have a lovelier setting. The inn allows you to be as active as you wish while still affording the tranquility and natural setting many desire.

Food is excellent. Each night one is offered a choice of either fish or some type of meat. The fresh fish is simply prepared and always delicious. The happy hour which precedes dinner by an hour is a meal in itself. Meals are served in a community fashion which allows your luxury cabin mates to become friends. From what we could tell, everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves.

Carlos greets each new guest like an old friend and arranges excursions and special requests. Don't miss out on the sunset boat ride around the point. The sunsets are as dramatic and lovely as any in the world. The service is friendly and attentive. This inn is all inclusive for meals but alcoholic drinks are extra. Get a guaro lemonade after a long day in the jungle!

Most guests opt for a combo package which includes a hike at Corcovado National Park and snorkeling at Cano Island. We found that most guests thought the mangrove tour to be even more rewarding if one enjoys wildlife and bird watching. The scarlet macaws are a site to behold and will let you know they are in the vicinity.

There is no activity after dinner. However, most guests are worn out from the activities of the day. Tropical birds will wake you at sunrise.

This is a beautiful unspoiled locale not to be missed.

Stayed April 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
4 Thank Luigi53SD
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
St. Catharines, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 March 2014

We were at Agula de Osa for 5 days and 4 nights. From our first step on the docks to our last foot in the boat to leave, we could not have asked for better service or nicer people. Thank you. We had 2 amazing days of diving. Seen dolphins on the way out to Cano island, seen a mother teaching the baby to catch fish. As well we seen reef sharks, large schools of fish, eagle rays and much more. We hiked to the beach, nice walk and fun playing in the waves. Kayaking in the afternoon when the tide was coming in, we seen a crocodile,very cool. We celebrated my honey,s birthday and they made him wonderful birthday cake. I had emailed to see if they could have a bottle of champagne for me and they did. I just cannot say enough. We had a shore lunch and I had mentioned I would love coconut. They did get me a coconut and more than one. As well the other guests we were lucky to have appetizers and dinner with made our trip a memorable one. Purda vida!

Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
1 Thank Brendar R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cleveland
Level 6 Contributor
175 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 March 2014

That's a pun. Although the suspension bridges of central CR were higher, the 3 flight climb to our room made it feel like we were sleeping in a tree house. Rooms are large and grand, and the view spectacular, whether for birding or just watching boats on the bay. Food was great and service impeccable. You will make your dinner choice at lunch since food variety is limited, often catch of the day.
Be prepared for the wet landings of the small boats when arriving and on the Corcovada hike. Also have good boots if you are hiking to the waterfall. I also recommend the mangrove boat ride and the sunset boat ride. Early morning birding is available if desired.

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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank SteveBot
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago
Level 3 Contributor
9 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2014

We had a fabulous time recently at the Aguila de Osa hotel on Drake Bay in Costa Rica.

The location, overlooking the Pacific, was magnificent, with its views, flowers and birds. The staff was exceptional, friendly and extremely helpful. The trips offered were great. And the man in charge of it all, Olman Benes, was outstanding.

We'd go back in a New York (or Chicago) minute.

Pat and Cliff Terry
(Free-lance writers)
Chicago

Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank TerryWriters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Salt Lake City, Utah
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 March 2014 via mobile

We stayed here for 6 nights and literally could not find anything to complain about. The hotel is really well built and extremely clean. The attention to the guests was exceptional. The rooms are nicely appointed with perfect views. The food completely surprised me. It was tasty and healthy with appropriate portions. The scuba diving was amazing - we had never been in the Pacific before. The guides were all so professional and organized. You can tell they like their jobs. Bradd the owner was very personable but never intrusive. We will definitely come back and we will definitely recommend this resort to others including families with older aged children.

Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank ambrisk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Philadelphia
Level 6 Contributor
105 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 116 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 March 2014

My family and I spent 5 days here. Let’s start from the beginning. We booked the local flights from San Jose to Drake Bay, hotel and tours ahead of time with Aguila de Osa rep. All communications were satisfactory. One huge item that should have been communicated to us was the change of the airports by Nature Air. Our reservations were booked from Pavas, we showed up 1.5hr before the departure only to find out that the airline is no longer operating from the local airport and we need to drive to International airport. Knowing that Nature Air locks down its check-in rather quickly we jumped into a taxi and drove to the International Airport. We should have been made aware of this by Aguila de Osa rep as the convenience and expectation that everything will be taken care of was my reason for going with this option. Have we not made it ( needed to be escorted to the aircraft by Nature Air rep, after an argument – they did not want to let us on the plane, as we missed the boarding time by 5 min), we would lose time, money and lots of nerves, especially traveling with young children. Inexcusable. We arrived at Drake Bay with few other passengers, who were promptly met at the landing strip by their hotel drivers. We lugged our backpacks to the “terminal hut” and were asked by a kind lady where are we heading. Once we explained, she pointed to a suv and said this is our ride, but the driver was nowhere to be found for another 10-15 minutes. On the way to the hotel we stopped by a private residence to refill gas (which is fine), but the guy spilled the gasoline all over the road, making the entire vehicle smell like gas! Again, a big no-no. Due to low tide there was no way for us to pull up to the dock, therefore we were let out of the boat and walked through the mud to the dock (this is ok, you can’t control the nature, just something to keep in mind when deciding on your footwear). Check-in was quick, again confusion on room selection, we specifically requested a certain room number, but were quartered in a different cabana (which at the end worked out fine, and we were happy, but the fact this was a miss needs to be noted).
Location is great, grounds were in full bloom with flowers and wildlife abundant (we saw more scarlet macaws from out porch than during excursions to mangroves and sirena station).
Food was ok, we stayed in similar properties in Belize and Guatemala, and honestly having this comparison, Aguila was just ok. The community dining was enjoyable and the appetizers hour a great idea. Now on to the trips: we did the following: zip line, Corcovado National Park Sirena Station, Mangrove Tour, Night Tour, and full day of fishing.
Mangrove tour – excellent option for people ,who are not big on hiking. This tour gives you the opportunity to see wildlife, explore the mangroves(which were amazing), and do it all from comfort of the boat. My thoughts on this, since I prefer a more intimate encounters with the animals and do enjoy a hike, the tour was just ok, I should have known that the noise of the boat motor will be in the background constantly which kind off takes away from the encounter. Food on the tour was good (fruit and coconut cookies) and the guides excellent. They were very patient and gave plenty of time for everyone on the boat to see the animal encountered and to take photos.
Sirena Station – Corcovado National Park. Definitelly a highlight of out stay at Aguila. Another couple joined us on this excursion. Tony – our guide was exceptional, his character and demeanor, respect for the nature was something to be admired and followed. We left early in the morning (5:30 am). The boat ride is indeed long and can be bumpy, if you get sick easily take motion sickness meds (this is a 2 hour boat ride). The hike itself was amazing, in part due to all the bird and animal sightings, the flora, numerous varieties of mushroom, and again our guide. We spotted many species of birds, all 4 species of monkeys, saw wild pigs, lizards, ants, tapir, snakes, hermit crabs galore, one item in particular that left me in awe, a minute hummingbird nest with a tiny egg in it. Tony pointed out different trees that were hundreds of years old, footprints of animals and told stories of his time growing up, tourism, nature and his experience at Aguila. We ended our hike at around 1:30pm during low tide, meaning we had to wait on the beach for the water to rise in order to get back to our boats. This was a great downtime as well, because the entire volcanic sea bottom was uncovered and we could spot some cool creatures hiding in the cracks between the rocks. The hermit crabs on the beach kept us entertained as well. This is where we had our lunch provided by Aguila which was tasty. We were back at the hotel at around 4:30 pm. I highly recommend this tour.
Zip line – did it in the afternoon on the day we arrived. This tour is contracted out to an operator and was great fun. John was our guide, a young man that was great to talk to. Not only he was excellent with kids, made sure we are safe on the lines, but was also an awesome naturalist in training, he had a vast knowledge of local nature and pointed out little things here and there through the whole time. We were back at Aguila in 3.5 hr. time.
Night tour – duration : approximately 1.5hr. This tour takes place on and around the hotel property grounds. Participants are provided with head lamps and are guided by the naturalist through the forest spotting different night creatures. Make sure to bring the bug spray, this is the key and the fact that you have it or not will break or make your experience. It was super humid in the jungle, you get sticky fast and all of the mosquitoes fly up to you like a magnet since it’s pitch dark in the woods with only your headlight on, hypnotizing the bugs lol. The guide was good at finding interesting animals, but I think my son spotted more bugs and creatures that Carlos so they made a good team, my son found animals and Carlos explained what they are. Some memories from this tour include a tiny frog my son spotted, tarantulas as promised by Carlos, us getting devoured by mosquitoes, and stepping into an ant colony…which brings me to a final point, if you plan on doing this wear full shoes, long pants and again arm yourself with bug spray (and make sure you bring it from home, because it is nowhere to be purchased at Aguila or the town nearby).
Full day of fishing – a huge disappointment. If you are not a fisherman, please ignore rest of this review and add 1 more star to overall hotel rating. One of the reasons we chose Aguila was because they advertised themselves at “fisherman’s paradise” destination with experienced anglers and professionally outfitted boat. My husband and son were crossing out the days in the calendar to go fishing in Osa. We knew this was a premiere fishing destination and, once again, this is primarily why we came to Drake Bay Peninsula. We did not even take into consideration while planning this, that we will not catch a single fish. Guess what, we were wrong. I know, all of you reading this, are probably saying “it’s fishing, not catching”, I understand that, but you know what, it is OSA, one of the most bio diverse spots on this planet, and honestly, we always catch something, even on a bad day off of New Jersey shore…so what does this tell you, either the fish vanished suddenly or the crew and boat are not on par with what they are advertising. We were to leave Aguila at 5:30 AM, BUT waited at the dock until 7:00am, because there was no ICE for the fish cooler! (really? that should have been our wake up call, why need ice if we’re not going to catch anything) We spoke to the capitan day in advance that we are interested in game fish, deep water, off-shore fishing. He stated it’s no problem, we need to go off shore at least 35-38 miles and from there we can troll for fish. We had 6-7 fish on the hook the entire day (from 7:00AM until 4:30PM), my son didn’t even get to hold a fishing rod (disappointed much?), the bait was too large, and boat had seen better days, no satellite technology, fish finders or radars. Interior cluttered with rubber lures, the bathroom was in sorry shape without the door closing and lack of toilet paper. Very uncomfortable, the capitan did not have a single conversation with us during the entire day! He sat on the top deck steering while his brother served him drinks and food up on top. At around 3pm we started going back inshore to troll up and down the coast, I think they were hoping for some roosterfish but at this point we were not interested. Once we returned to the hotel we made the manager aware we were not happy with the way our day turned out, he offered us ½ day on the next day, while the crew will go out to get fish for hotel dinner. Seriously? To go in-shore fishing we could hop into small panga and not an old boat smelling diesel fumes the entire time. We should have been offered at least 50% discount for that day because it was a disaster. Am I complaining? Absolutely, we spent $950 for this, expecting results. If you are serious about fishing, do yourself a favor and book with “Reel Escape”, they own a state of the art 35-foot CABO yacht with full bathroom, beautiful interior, air-conditioned cabin with stove, microwave, fridge, TV and lounge area. Simply gorgeous boat. We had the opportunity to talk to Real Escape capitan and crew one evening when they docked at Aguila, we asked them if they are free the next day, unfortunately not, but they invited us on board, showed us around the boat and offered a discount right then for the next time we return, simply because they could not accommodate us on our dates. Check them out, they are here on trip advisor.
So, to sum up my experience at Aguila, there were ups and downs, positives and negatives. As I mentioned we stayed in similar properties in other countries, and honestly, Aguila falls short. We had a good time and made some wonderful memories but I do think they are overpriced, and need to improve in couple of areas stated above. Would I stay here again , no – simply because there are so many places I still want to visit. Would I recommend this place to a friend – hmmm..I would mention Aguila as one of the options.

Room Tip: go with room 1 or 2 if WIFI is important to you, singal from the lobby reaches here. Also, these ro...
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
7 Thank jolajarek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Aguila de Osa

Property: Aguila de Osa
Address: Drake Bay, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Osa Peninsula > Drake Bay
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Drake Bay
#3 Romantic Hotel in Drake Bay
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Aguila de Osa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Rainforest and Marine Adventure Lodge: Nestled amidst the jungle-covered hillsides overlooking the tranquil waters of Drake Bay, Aguila de Osa is an exquisite rainforest and marine adventure hotel. It’s here where you will experience life right on the edge of the Osa. Aguila de Osa is the destination for adventurers from around the world, offering the most convenient access to Corcovado National Park, Caño Island Biological Marine Reserve, and a full array of adventures including world-class sport fishing, scuba diving and snorkeling, plus bird watching, hiking, beach trips, river kayaking, mangrove estuary tours, and more. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aguila De Osa Hotel Drake Bay
Hotel Aguila De Osa
Aguila De Osa Costa Rica/Drake Bay

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