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“Lots to do and a great value”

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Hacienda Guachipelin
Reviewed 21 October 2007

An amazing getaway! My husband and I spent 3 nights here during our CR vacation. The room was simple and clean, the food was very good (I still dream of their beans and rice and fresh fruit), the service was kind and helpful (many spoke some English and those that didn't suffered through my Spanglish), and there were endless things to do. The adventure tours are a must and I recommend taking the hotel shuttle to and from the airport to get there (the roads are extremely rugged). We hope to visit again sometime in the future.

  • Stayed: March 2006, travelled as a couple
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Thank JandJ_travelers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 2 August 2007

A friend and I stayed at Hacienda Guachipelin so that we could be close to Rincon de la Vieja National Park. The Park lived up to our expectations- the hikes were beautiful and had lots of unexpected terrain changes within one walk. Unfortunately we were not able to hike to the crater because there was too much wind and fog (which we found out happens often during the rainy season). Hacienda Guachipelin was what we expected after reading the reviews. The room was very nice and what we expected paying 75 dollars per night for the room. Very clean, cute rocking chairs outside, and a nice bathroom with hot shower. Definitely stay in the new section of the hotel as the old section is much nearer to the livestock and as we walked by those older rooms we could definitely smell farm animals. We did not go on any of the adventure tours as they seemed a bit expensive for what they were worth but would probably be a good option for groups or families with children. We did not use the pool when we were there because when we went to check it out it didn't seem very clean. Also the only place to eat while you are there is their restaurant which even for Costa Rica was decidely poor. They offer buffets for a fixed price and have other options on the menu, which were the same price as the buffet and not as much food (12 dollars american per person). Much of the buffet was tasteless and basic. We felt like we were paying a lot for what we got and could do nothing about it. One more thing- as far as transportation goes to the site- There is a public bus that leaves Liberia daily at 12:30 although my friend and I were the only non-locals on it. But at about a $1.50 american it is by far the cheapest way to get to this off-the-beaten path destination. We tried to take the bus back down but unfortunately it had broken down and we had to take the Hacienda's shuttle which was pretty expensive (20 dollars per person one way).

  • Stayed: July 2007, travelled with friends
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1  Thank bcitter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 July 2007

My sister and I booked a one night stay at Hotel Hacienda Guachipelin on July 18, 07. To reach this hotel, I strongly recommend renting a 4 X 4 to get you there. We relied on taxi's and ended up spending $80 on transportation to and from the Libera Airport. The problem is that it's on such a bumpy and rocky 16 km dirt road that it's hard to get anyone to take you in there. We kicked ourselves later for not having rented a vehicle since we could have taken a sidetrip to Coco Beach or any of the other nearby beaches (about 1 hr. drive).

The ranch itself is a real working ranch with cattle and horses, so if you can't stand the smell that occasionally eminates from the barn, this wouldn't be the place for you. The lobby and reception is housed in what seems to be an old barn that has been redecorated in a casually tropical decor. There is a small pool and about 6-7 lounge chairs. Also, there is a covered lanai with chairs and coffee tables by a small bar where you can get tropical drinks and cervezas. The rooms themselves are clean and neatly appointed, but have no A/C. We didn't find ourselves needing it as the fan was more than ample to keep us cool. The grounds of the Hacienda are neatly kept and full of trees and tropical plants and is nice for taking a stroll.

As far as the reception staff, I was underwhelmed due to lack of information freely given by them. There was not a great flow of communication as I constantly had to ask questions that in my mind should have been explained to me upon check-in. Questions such as check out time, tour times and pick up schedules, method of payment accepted etc. On the other hand, the restaurant staff was attentive, jovial and very friendly. Also, the offerings at the restaurant were well prepared and plentiful.

The Hacienda offers several tours and one in particular is what enticed us to make the trip from San Jose to Liberia. It's the first of it's kind that I've seen in Costa Rica and we thought that it would be great fun. The tour that we so anxiously awaited was the river tubing tour and it surpassed all of our expectations. This was no calm tubing trip down a serene river. No, this 1 1/2 hour long trip ,which began at a beautiful waterful, was full of excitement with plenty of rapids to maneuver through in a rock filled swirling river. We were a party of 9 tubers and were accompanied by 5 guides who led us down the river and instructed us on how not to fall out of our tubes and how to protect ourselves from the rocks. All in all it was a great time and we wished that we could have done it again.

We would definately return to the Hacienda Guachipelin, but next time we'll be sure to rent a vehicle. Also, we'll bring the kids so that they can take the all day tour for $75.00 which includes the tubing, zip lines, canyoning, waterfall repelling and horseback riding.

  • Stayed: July 2007, travelled with family
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1  Thank Tuanis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 April 2007

Had a super experience with this all inclusive package. We stayed two
nights, went horse back riding, to the mud/hot springs, hiked in the national park Rincon De La Vieja, tubing down the Rio Negro, and a zip line trip through the canopy. The buffet has lots of fresh fruits
and good vegetable dishes. For me, it was too bland and did not have enough local flavor, but I am sure this appeals to a lot of travelers. Had the sense that they get a lot of European travelers there? It was a great value for all the things we did. The ride up the dirt road to the ranch is bone jarring but thankfully relatively short. All the excursions were super fun. The room was very nice, very quiet. Staff is friendly and helpful. I made use of my pathetic Spanish here, not as many fluent English speakers as you find on the coasts. A gorgeous setting.

  • Stayed: April 2007, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank histrionia62
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 February 2007

My husband and I along with our 10 year old son just returned from Costa Rica. The last leg of our 2 week trip we stayed at the Hacienda Gauchipelin. We stayed 3 nights because we wanted to be near the Rincon de la Vieja park. I picked this hotel because it was in our price range $84.00 U.S.(basic room) a night and it had a pool. The pool is very nice. The rooms are fine we had the basic 2 beds. The beds aren't great. The sheets are lacking as they are of poor quality (very old and pilled. They do not provide wash cloths. The bathroom was a nice size. The desk clerks are not very nice or helpful. In general we aren't much for tours, but we did take a horse back ride at this resort. My horse lacked a lot of hair and was suffering from a horrible tick infestation. I asked our guide if she was ill. He said no. The next morning I did see our guide spraying something on the horses (bug spray?). The horses my husband and son had seemed much better although they had ticks also. The food at this hotel in general is just not very good. They don't go out of their way to let you know that you can order off of the menu also. They have 3 buffets a day. We found out on our last night that they have a menu. We had burgers and they were just awful. The waiters and housekeeping staff were very good. I read on another site that they have a spa and a souvenir shop and A/C. The Frommer's guide and the Lonely Planet guide do not mention any of these amenities. We did not see any of this while there. The first day the drinks were reasonably priced. After that it seemed to be a crap shoot as to what you may be charged for drinks and the limited snacks they had there. You are a little captive there as you need to leave the resort to get food or other items. There is a good restaurant in Curubande a pueblo down the road. You would need transportation though as it would be a pretty good hike in the sun. If I were to return to this area I would definitely stay some place else. This is a cattle/horse ranch. They seem to have some very poor ways of doing things. One morning there was a lot of racket. I went out to investigate, it turns out they were driving a big tractor with a dead pig stuck on the back through 3 small pens filled with catlle and horses. The cattle were slipping/falling from fear and trying to get out of the way. I know a little about farming so I thought this was a really bad practice. We felt disappointed by our stay at Hacienda Guachipelin. Costa Rica is fantastic.

Stayed: February 2007
2  Thank tsWi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 November 2006

We spent 3 nights at the Hacienda and had a great time! As the other reviews said, the rooms are basic and clean. I was actually pleasantly surprised at the large size and nice hot shower. I don't think the rooms have A/C, but we were there in Oct. so it was OK with the fan.

There are lots of great hikes, both long and short. While they suggest tours for just about everything, most of the hikes can be done on your own if you're not into tours (which we aren't really). We ended up hiking/walking to all of the waterfalls, including the Oropendola. When you arrive they give you a little map of all the hikes and will tell you the park & Oropendola are about 5-6 km, which is a pretty long walk (maybe 3-4 miles to the head of the waterfall trail?) We started at about noon and ended up getting back after dark. The only way to see the waterfall is to hop across the rio on some rocks during the rainy season. The 20-30 bat "fly-by" we experienced in the canyon made it all worth it! By the way, the hike to La Victoria also has some river crossing, not all of which can be done without removing shoes or wearing boots/water shoes.
The canopy tour was super fun and all of the guides were really nice and very accommodating .

The food and the service in their restaurant are good. It's just about the only option unless you have a car. The little bar by the pool was pretty lively with a fun marimba trio getting everyone to dance. I could see taking a group of friends to this place for a lot of adventure.

I took the advice of the reviewer who said "...stay in the new part to avoid the smell of livestock" and was glad we did. We were in #61 and I thought probably #'s 50-57 were probably ideal as they are off the (lightly travelled) road to the park and away from the cows & roosters. The 3 nights and 2.5 days we stayed were plenty of time to see all there is to see if you are active.

  • Stayed: October 2006
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3  Thank OsideLB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 October 2006

We loved this place too. We had originally looked at the lodge close to the Park entrance (can't remember the name), which was really tatty and so chose the Hacienda Guachipelin not expecting too much. Sure it's not five-star but has so much else going for it.

The nicest rooms are around a grassed area, a short walk from the main buildings. The rooms are basic but very clean and well furnished. The meals are adequate though not great but there is a nice bar next to the pool, which is a good place to 'chill' after a busy day.

The staff are charming and helpful and seem to enjoy helping you make the most of your visit. There are a lot of activities - you would need to stay a week to do them all. We went horseriding and did plenty of walking but there's much more. Make sure you go into the Park and see the hot springs.

The dirt road off the Interamericana is not good but it is much better than many we were on, such as the route to Monteverdi.

  • Stayed: September 2006, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Spineynorman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hacienda Guachipelin

Address: Parque Nacional Rincon de la Vieja, Rincon de La Vieja 208-50101, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Rincon de La Vieja
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 7 Hotels in Rincon de La Vieja
Price Range: £63 - £148 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Hacienda Guachipelin 3*
Number of rooms: 54
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hacienda Guachipelin is a comfortable hotel with 54 rooms, each with private bathroom and hot water. The best Costa Rican ecotourism lodge for adventure travel and nature lovers, located at the entrance of Rincon de la Vieja Volcano National Park. This is the most visited National Park in Guanacaste. For the adventurer, there are many activities like horseback riding, the Canyon canopy tour, Rio Negro Tubing, canyoneering, bird watching, as well as trekking to the crater of Rincon de la Vieja Volcano. Free transportation to the National Park and the hot springs. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hacienda Guachipelin Hotel Rincon De La Vieja
Hacienda Guachipelin Costa Rica/Rincon De La Vieja

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