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“a great costa rican ranch experienc”

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Hacienda Guachipelin
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
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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
Reviewed 28 July 2006

Looking back at our 3.5 week trip across Costa Rica, the 2 nights that we spent here were our most memorable. We had two separate rooms and they are basic (no TV, AC, or phone) but with all of the activities and location, they certainly werent missed by me, my husband or my two teenagers.

This is a working ranch with about 100 horses. We went for a horseback ride through the forest and my husband, who is afraid of horses, wanted to do it again. It was safe and the horses were very well cared for and wanted to take to the trails. The extreme tubing was fun, but even more impressive were the hikes just minutes from the hotel. You can walk to a beautiful swimming hole where 2 warm waterfalls mix with the cold river water.

The most stunning and our favorite place in the world is Rincon de la Vieja National Park. It is a 10-15minute drive from the hotel It is open 7-3 - get there early and hopefully you will feel like we did - no one was around and we were discovering this new world for the first time.

As far as the food at the hotel, it is comida tipica or casado (rice & beans) for breakfast, lunch and dinner with some kind of meat stew. The setting is great but the food gets old very quickly.

  • Stayed: July 2006, travelled with family
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1  Thank ricetravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 July 2006

We took our daughter (in her forties) and 2 grandchildren (ages 10 and 11) to Hacienda Guachipelin and spent three nights and fabulous days there.

The best vacation our daughter and grandchildren ever had. They spent every possible minute on tours - everything from tubing the river, riding the zip lines, and their biggest love - riding horses. The tour guides and the Hacienda personnel were completely qualified and very safety minded. At the same time friendly and made sure that the guests had a wonderful experience.

The Hacienda was a little more than an hour from Liberia. There was about 15 kilometers of dirt road which could easily by navigated by a regular automobile.

The meals were all buffet style. Many of the items were repeated during our stay. But the food was good and the fruit drinks were delicious. If you want alcoholic drinks, there were 2 for 1 cocktails each night we were there.

We highly recommend Hacienda Guachipelin for everyone who wants an active and fun Costa Rican experience. The kids are already talking about going back....they say "Better than Disneyworld.

  • Stayed: June 2006
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2  Thank mllTucson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 June 2006

First, it is a cool looking ranch. It is still laid out along the lines of the original ranch and many of the rooms are converted bunkhouses. This adds a lot to the aesthetic charm -- but it also creates a problem. The ranch hands all lived next to the stables. The back wall of our room was a wall of the stable. Our room smelled pretty strongly of horse manure, and because there is no air-conditioning, you couldn't close the windows. In the morning, the horses woke us up at feeding time. Their wild neighing definitely added local flavor and we were not sleeping in anyway.

The food is truly, truly bad. The buffet (at both Dinner and Breakfast) was generally inedible and frequented by flies and bees. But there is no where else to eat in the area, so you just have to appreciate what you get.

Having said all of the above, it is a neat ranch. If you can accept it as a ranch then it's a good place to stay. Moreover, if you want to visit Rincon De La Vieja, then it is really the only game in town.

  • Stayed: June 2006
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1  Thank Travel175
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 208-5010, 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: £51 - £153 (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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