Fodor's Expert Review Hacienda Guachipelín

17 km (10 miles) northeast of the Pan-American Hwy., on road to Las Pailas park entrance, Rincón de la Vieja National Park, Guanacaste, 108-5000, Costa Rica

One of the best values in the Rincón area for hair-raising adventure and nature tours, this hotel also gets top billing for its comfortable rooms, excellent restaurant, and friendly service. The 3,706-acre working ranch is famous for its horses—more than 100 of them. Rugged ranch hands swagger around, giving the place a real cowboy flavor. Guachipelín is also famous for its wildlife and the nature trails that wind throughout this vast, partially forested property; they lead to several scenic waterfalls, hot springs, and mud baths. Older rooms are comfortable and homey, with screened windows to let in cool mountain air. Try to get a room between Nos. 32 and 39, all of which have volcano views from their front terrace. The newer rooms, Nos. 32 and up, are larger and very elegantly furnished, arranged around a garden with towering trees and a gaggle of geese. All rooms have air-conditioning, but you rarely need it here. Avoid Rooms 24 to 31, right beside the corral, unless you enjoy the aroma of horses. Rooms 10 to 23 are closest to the pool. Hearty buffet and à la carte meals feature authentic touches, such as hand-rolled breakfast tortillas made on the spot, and beef and dairy products fresh from the hacienda's own herd. The pleasant open-air restaurant has valley views by day, and a marimba band plays softly at dinner. The hotel's spa offers an array of treatments, from mud wraps to massages.

PROS

  • near park entrance
  • lots of activities
  • excellent value
  • home-cooked Costa Rican cuisine

CONS

  • caters to large groups and day visitors
  • some rooms are near horse stables
  • $50 fee for check-out after 12 pm

Location

QUICK FACTS

Hotel
Family
Casual
Countryside
Local Flavor
$$

HOTEL INFO

Phones: -2666–8075 | 888-730–3840-toll-free in U.S.

HOTEL DETAILS

64 rooms, 2 suites
Rate Includes: Free breakfast

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