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“Friendly & Helpful staff, spartan accomodations”
Review of Hotel El Viandante

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Hotel El Viandante
Ranked #7 of 40 Monteverde B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Maryland
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Friendly & Helpful staff, spartan accomodations”
Reviewed 1 January 2008

Stayed one night at the Hotel El Viandante on our one week whirlwind tour of Costa Rica over Christmas week. Roberto could not have been more helpful in advising me in advance regarding walks and tours of the Cloud Forest. We were two families of four, each with two teenagers, and booked this trip last minute. We were hoping to do a canopy tour in Arenal, but were rained out, so Roberto immediately arranged a tour on the first clear afternoon in a week (according to others), arranged a pickup, gave us a quick place to get lunch in less than an hour, and arranged a transfer from the canopy tour to our next activity, a night walk of the Ecological Sanctuary (well worth it).

The rooms were small and spartan, with no place to put two pieces of luggage, the beds were stiff and uncomfortable for the middle aged parents with worsening backs (though the kids did not complain). There was hot water, but only on the lowest water pressure. Breakfast was delicious, with plenty of fresh fruit, eggs and ham cooked to order.

The prices were the most reasonable of any on our stay in the highest week of high season. Overall, this placed seemed more like a luxurious hostel, with a nice common area, an internet lounge, a friendly and welcoming place if you are willing to sacrifice some of the little luxuries that middle aged travelers sometimes demand.

  • Liked — helpful staff
  • Disliked — beds, rooms
  • Stayed December 2007, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank chicken11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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270 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
  • Location
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (27)
Date | Rating
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English first
chicago
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 December 2007

we stayed 2 nights at El Viandante, we booked a room with 2 double beds and 2 bathrooms with ocean's view....we saw the ocean only for a couple of minutes because it was always claudy...we liked the hotel, the room was big enough for 4 people, was clean and the owners very helpfull....the breakfast was the best we ever had in costa rica, the only suggestion that i can give at the owners it's to build a restaurant in the hotel...will be much better!!

  • Liked — big and clean room, helpfull staff
  • Stayed December 2007, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank viajeroschicago
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
san francisco, ca
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 December 2007

I was in Costa Rica for a week with my wife and spent two nights in Monteverde. The drive there from Arenal was a bit rough, but not as bad as advertised, and we loved Monteverde. Our only downer was this hotel.

First the pros.
The staff is friendly and helpful.
It is cheap (but you get what you pay for...). $45 including breakfast.
The breakfast is very good (but not great as others have suggested).
The location is quite good (halfway between town and the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve.)
There is free internet with 3 computers available.
The bed was firm but comfortable.
The room was clean.

Now, unfortunately, the cons in this case outweigh the pros by a very large margin. We stayed in room #8.

First off, this may have to do with which room we got (other rooms may be better but our room is the only one I can review), but during the daytime, it was like a greenhouse in the room. There were windows that cannot be opened, and they face an aluminum roof. The sun would bounce off the roof and then back into the windows and it superheated the room. It was not physically possible to spend any of the daylight hours in the room it was so hot (and I am generally cold and prefer warmer environs!). There was no fan. The window that we could open (or tilt open actually) faced the lobby/staircase so that we could hear everything that everyone in the lobby said and every loud footstep as people went up or down the stairs.
The room was small but this did not bother me or my wife.
The bathroom was the biggest problem. The bathroom is sort of private. Actually, if you stuck your hand along the windows you could reach into the bathroom. That wasn't the real problem though. The water pressure in the barely working sink was virtually nonexistent. The shower water pressure was poor and the water was barely lukewarm. The shower or plumbing had some sort of leak that caused the bathroom floor to get covered in water despite taking a very brief shower. This water then ran into the main bedroom area. All around this was not good on many different levels.

All in all, this was easily the worst place we stayed on our great trip to Costa Rica. We also stayed at the Fonda Vela in Monteverde. Now, that cost almost 3 times as much but was ten times better. Maybe the other rooms at El Viandante are better, but there is no way I would ever stay in room #8. If you need a budget hotel it could work for you, but don't let the reviews here fool you - it is cheap for a reason.

  • Liked — cheap
  • Disliked — everything else
  • Stayed November 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank detifoss
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sao Paulo, SP
Level Contributor
48 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 October 2007

This is a great hotel! Well located, great staff service (Roberto knows everything about the tours and will provide you with very sincere statements about all what you can do in Monteverde).

The hotel does not have wireless internet connexion, but you may access in the lobby.

  • Liked — Staff service
  • Disliked — Internet
  • Stayed September 2007, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank 44ase
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Panama
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 25 September 2007

Stayed at el Viandante in August 2007. Booked in for 3 nights. Liz and all her staff were fantastic (Roberto is the best front of house ever).

The hotel is spotless, the breakfast superb but what makes it the best is the help and information that all the staff give you. The rides into the town centre (and back) are a real bonus.

Just don't look anywhere else-- it cannot be bettered.

  • Stayed August 2007, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank PenelopePanama
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 21 September 2007

I booked this hotel for 2 nights through Hostelbookers and decided to cancel our stay in Monte Verde, as we spent longer in Arenal. I cancelled this 48 hours before the reservation, but did not get the name of the receptionist. I got back home to find that I was charged for the full two nights, when the confirmation sent clearly states that only the first night will be charged for no shows and late cancellations.
Having seen this I called up the hotel and spoke to the receptionist who could not help me and told me the manager would call me, who never did. But instead sent me an email saying that this is their policy. I have emailed them on several occasions sending the original confirmation, which clearly indicates the cancellation policy. But they have failed to respond and left this issue unresolved. I am very disappointed at the level of service received, as they cannot abide by their own rules and policies set out.

A great let down!!!

  • Stayed August 2007, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Pingu1London
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Miami, Florida
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 August 2007

Great Hotel to stay at. My boyfriend and I got in around 10 p.m. and were welcomed with open hands. The rooms are very spacious and comfortable. The staff was great and very helpful with directions and setting up tours. I would definitely stay here again. The only bad thing is the drive over there( unpaved roads ).

  • Liked — The room space
  • Disliked — The drive there
  • Stayed August 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank sweetladie326
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hotel El Viandante

Property: Hotel El Viandante
Address: Frente Hotel Sapo Dorado, Costa Rica
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Monteverde
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 40 B&Bs / Inns in Monteverde
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2 star — Hotel El Viandante 2*
Number of rooms: 13
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel El Viandante , 13 new rooms all with private bathroom , hot water(no electric showers), cable tv, wireless , free internet. New breakfast and dining room with amazing view of Nicoya's gulf and the forest. ... more   less 
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