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Lost Iguana vs. Arenal Paraiso

Old Oct 24th, 2006, 01:52 PM
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Lost Iguana vs. Arenal Paraiso

Okay guys, I need some advice here.

We'll be staying 2 nights in the Arenal area following a few days at Bosque del Cabo in March. Both LI and AP have availability.

We've stayed at AP before and like the location. Very central--and the accomodations suited us just fine. I've done some checking, and the Standard Deluxe cabinas at Lost Iguana are about $30 more per night. Not as much difference as I had thought.

Our splurge is Bosque del Cabo, so we are looking to not be so "spendy" at Arenal. We are sleeping 3 to a room and will reserve only 2 rooms (as opposed to 4 cabinas at BdC). However, if LI is significantly nicer than AP, we might go ahead and opt for rooms there, especially since we've not stayed there before.

Has anyone tried both? Opinions? Or even if someone who has stayed in the Standard Deluxe cabinas at LI could elaborate on them a bit????
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Old Oct 25th, 2006, 03:52 PM
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Okay, I take this to mean that no one has been to both, therefore can't compare.

So, for those familiar with the area, how far apart are the two? 10 min.. . 15 min? I remember seeing the sign to Lost Iguana back in July and am thinking it is a ways off the main road?

I know that those who have stayed in the Deluxe rooms at LI have raved. . .but has anyone stayed in the standard superior rooms?

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Old Oct 25th, 2006, 06:54 PM
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jill, best I can remember, when we left AP to the Hanging Bridges, we passed LI as it's right before it, and I think it was about 15-20 minutes.
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Old Oct 25th, 2006, 09:25 PM
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LI is out in the boonies; in fact, it's right "up the hill" from the boat launch to Monteverde. One of the tours we took during the summer charged a little extra for the transportation because of the distance to pick us up and drop us off. (They wouldn't have charged if we were closer to Fortuna.) You're right, AP is more centrally located.

Don't know about the deluxe rooms at LI. We stayed in a standard room, which was very spacious, so the cabinas must be really deluxe, but no matter what accommodation you choose, you will have a volcano view.

How lucky you are to return to CR once again. Enjoy!

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Old Oct 26th, 2006, 01:48 AM
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Thanks, both of you. I'm thinking we'll save Lost Iguana for another time and just opt for the tried and true. We'll be arriving late in the day and leaving early in the day 2 days later. I'm thinking it would be much simpler to avoid the distance to Lost Iguana. Thanks--just what I needed to hear!
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Old Oct 26th, 2006, 07:09 AM
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I am quite familiar with both. I can recommend both hotels. As noted, Arenal Paraiso is located a lot closer to Fortuna, 15 minutes closer. But the rooms and the layout are nicer at Lost Iguana (if you are away from the construction). If you want to visit the Hanging Bridges, Lost Ig gives a $10 discount. Both places have excellent views of the Volcano though many of A Paraisos's views are less than ideal behind other units or facing slightly away - depends on the particular unit. All of Lost Iguana's views are good. Both hotels have good hiking trails behind the property. Both have good swimming pool areas, though Lost Iguana gets the nod from their excellent landscaping and layout.

So, to me it comes down to whether to go with the expensive Arenal Paraiso or the outragously expensive Lost Iguana. And the extra cost might be worth it, but it is a close call. If you are planning to go to Hanging bridges, then the cost difference is mitigated somewhat and I'd stay at the Lost Iguana.

Personally, I think they are both overpriced but there are no good deals in March unfortunately.
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Old Oct 26th, 2006, 06:39 PM
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Thanks, toucantango. Cute screenname!

I've faxed a res. form to Arenal Paraiso. Hopefully I can get a couple of deluxe rooms secured. I think that extra distance out to Lost Iguana isn't the best idea for us this time. Will try it later when it is just the two of us. We're familiar with AP, having stayed there before.

Although the price does seem a bit high, I think we're paying for the view--should Miss Arenal present herself!

We haven't done the Hanging Bridges before, and that brings up another question. Some of us will probably be doing the Arenal Paraiso ziplines. Others of us may opt for the Hanging Bridges. One of the ladies in our group has Parkinson's and, although she manages very well, climbing would be out of the question. In your opinion, would the Hanging Bridges be prohibitive for her? Thanks, anyone and/or everyone!
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Old Oct 26th, 2006, 07:20 PM
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Jill I think she would be fine. It was definitely the least strenous thing I've done in CR (though very rewarding). It is a lot of walking, and there were a several areas where we had to climb steps - not steep stair type but very low steps climbing up for several minutes. I was with an elderly couple and they managed well. It's a very slow walk. I enjoyed it a lot! Of course you know I really loved the Sky Trek too if the AP zips look too tame - a lot of fun!
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Old Oct 27th, 2006, 08:53 PM
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Thanks, Pasha!
Not sure she'll want to do anything much at all, but it will be helpful to know that the bridges are do-able.

And I'd forgotten about SkyTrek. Where is it exactly? Our guys who haven't zipped before might prefer that for a little more excitement!
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Old Oct 28th, 2006, 04:15 AM
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SkyTrek is about 20 minutes away, if I remember correctly it's on the way to the Observatory. AP doesn't offer it as one of their tours, but were kind enough to call them from the tour desk and handed me the phone to book. I think it was about $60 and well worth it. You ride one of the little trams going up, we saw some congos, then you get to the top and see the actual lines (gulp!). But after the first one I was so into it. The guides were great and it defintely is much more than the usual ziplines. Here's that video the guide took for me....
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i05GRvhCmp0
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Old Oct 28th, 2006, 05:13 AM
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Sounds like a lot of fun. We stayed at the Obs. Lodge 3 days in July--can't believe I didn't notice it somewhere along the way--we were in and out of there every day. To tell you the truth, I forgot about SkyTrek being in the Arenal area until you mentioned. Now that you have, I do remember comparisons of this one to the one at Monteverde.

Cool video!
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