Travel agents and hotels

May 16th, 2004, 10:04 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 68
Travel agents and hotels

I'm posting this message again hoping to get more advices.

Anyone had good or bad experiences with these 2 Costa Rican travel agents: and Expediciones Tropicales? suggested me to stay at Hotel Don Carlos ($65)in San Jose, Cataratas Resort($60)in Arenal and Trapp Family Lodge($70) in Monteverde. They also suggested Rio Celeste Hike ($90)in Monteverde.

Expediciones Tropicales suggested Hotel Amon Plaza ($85)in San Jose, Arenal Paraiso ($75)in Arenal and Hotel Establo ($75) in Monteverde. Airport pick up is $30 and the guided tour to Monteverde Reserve is $45 per person.

By the way, cleaniness of the hotel room is my biggest concern. You advice will definitely help me a lot. Thanks.
lachat is offline  
May 17th, 2004, 05:46 AM
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 30
Personally, I would not stay at the Trapp family lodge. I have heard some not so good reports about it plus, It is the last hotel before you get to the Monteverde Reserve which means you will be a long way from anything else up there.

Don Carlos is a fun place. Busy and noisy but a good atmosphere.

Arenal Paraiso is a nice place. Not super fancy but comfortable with a nice pool and fantastic view of the volcano.

Hotel Establo gets good marks from people who have stayed there. There are unbelievable views of the Gulf of Nicoya from there.
KatHep is offline  
May 17th, 2004, 03:08 PM
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 10,211
We have had excellent experiences (many times) at the Hotel Don Carlos. You can ask for one of the quieter rooms and they will accomodate you. The rooms are very clean and EVERYONE on staff is extremely friendly and helpful. I would highly recommend (and frequently do) the Don Carlos.

As for Arenal Paraiso, we stayed there in December and would do it again in a heartbeat. Their website is not deceiving. As mentioned above, the bungalows are not fancy, but clean with a great view. They have some decent spa services, a nice restaurant, thermal pool with swim up bar. Beautiful surroundings. Best view of the volcano you are likely to get. Convenient location right off the main highway. . .etc.
shillmac is offline  
May 17th, 2004, 04:48 PM
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 37
Wow, I was working with both those sites booking my trip. Trust me on this one, is your BEST BET. They are VERY professional, and the customer service is awesome!! Trust me on this one!!

This is what I'm doing and they helped me a lot.

Day 1: Arrive in San Jose and stay at Best Western Irazu. It's a safe hotel out of San Jose.
Day 2-3 Overnight Pacuare River Tour.
Day 4: Arenal Canopy Tour. Overnight at Hotel Los Lagos...nice hotel with hot springs, great reviews and direct view of volcano.
Day 5: Rio Celeste...EVERYONE says this tour is the best!
Day 6: Early morning Canyoning Tour and transfer to Finca Valverde.
Day 7: Morning guided tour of Cloud Reserve and Sky Wakl and Trek by afternoon.
Day 8-9 RELAX and surf in Tamarindo!
Domestic flight back to San Jose!

Costa Rica Travel Info IS THE BEST!!!
Wes2004 is offline  
May 18th, 2004, 12:33 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,098
We stayed in Arenal Paraiso in January. It was not fancy, but clean, modern bathroom, comfortable bed, nice pool area, an OK restaurant, and perfect view of the current flow lines on the volcano. Ask and they will wake you up at night if Arenal starts to put on a good show.
RufusTFirefly is offline  
May 18th, 2004, 12:35 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 6,098
Oh, in Monteverde we stayed at the Hotel Fonda Vela which is very nice--excellent restaurant, too. Taxis are really inexpensive--cost only $5 or $10 to take us anywhere in the vicinity.
RufusTFirefly is offline  

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