Lost Iguana Resort & Spa
Travel Blogs from La Fortuna
Upon arrival in the middle of the night, we were greeted by the security guard who loaded our luggage on a golf cart and took us up a steep hill to our room. It was pitch black, no light except the dim headlight on the cart and we couldn't see a thing...but the night sounds unlike any I've ever heard...I have no idea what was out there but it was …
Our red eye flight landed us in San Jose, Costa Rica at 5:30 in the morning. I had prearranged a rental car with Thrifty. Upon arrival at the rental car counter, I learned that the third party car insurance I purchased for $63 (through the Thrifty website have you) could not be accepted by Thrifty car rental. Instead, the insurance, which is …
... that was supposed to be very nice so we took a taxi there from town. Leonel, the taxi driver, was one of the nicest people you could ever meet and he gave us all the information a tourist needs without the slant on taking your money - especially for visiting a Hot Spring. All he asked in return was that we keep his card and phone for our return trip to town. This was not a problem because his fare was exactly what we expected ...
... trees in many parts- they are 180m in height! As it is early the clouds are not low yet so it was clear skies and impressive views!!! We came back and had some lunch, we are staying in a village called santa elana! The locals are very friendly and love to show off their food and especially coffee!!! We spent the afternoon in monteverde rainforest, we hiked for nearly 2 and a half hours and ...
Hidden away in the rainforest within the town is this really incredible ficus tree. It’s old. How old, I’m not too sure but old enough to know that once another tree grew within the ficus tree. Over time the ficus slowly wrapped itself around the tree, suffocating and killing it. The old tree disintegrated leaving the parasitic tree to itself with all the nooks and crannies perfect ...
How has this resort rated in the past?
More great choices in La Fortuna
Search TripAdvisor for more deals in La Fortuna
Travelers also recommend:
TravelPod Member ReviewsLost Iguana Resort & Spa La Fortuna
Every room seems to have a great view of the volcano. Easy 20 minute drive to Fortuna. Breakfast was great. Expeditions are much cheaper if you go into Fortuna to book directly with the expedition companies.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TravelPod member and not of TravelPod.com.
Historical Traveler Reviews Lost Iguana Resort & Spa La Fortuna
Married in Paradise!
We took a group of 10 to the wonderful Arenal area and got married at the Lost Iguana. Everything was amazing - views, service, accomodations, location. We stayed in the owner's villa - and had the ceremony right outside our terrace. They really outdid themselves with the decorations and the owner flew in to make sure everything was perfect.
Thanks to Alonzo at the desk for booking exciting tours, Dennis our waiter for making sure the drinks flowed, Shelly took care of all the details and Alex the bartender was fun.
We've stayed in lots of 5 star resorts and the Lost Iguana exceeded our expectations. I recommend the Lost Iguana with enthusiasm.
I was disappointed.
We just returned from CR and were at the Lost Iguana for our last 2 nights. I read many reviews on this site as well as others and actually canceled our reservation at the Tabacon to book it here b/c of those reviews. Boy, was I disappointed! The hotel site is nice, but very remote. Our room LOOKED nice, but we found lots of problems. First of all, if you like being at one with nature, this is the place for you. There are frogs, bugs, iguanas, etc., all over the place with easy access to your room. Secondly, our phone never worked, couldn't even call the front desk at times, nor did our clock. We were almost late to the airport because the alarm clock wouldn't work. Also, no one is around until 7am, so we had to wait around to check out, even though we had a flight to catch. It is also a bit of a drive to anywhere, and just to go from the Tabacon (where our friends were) to the Lost Iguana was $10 each way, every time. (even though it's only about 3 miles) We also had to pay to go to the hot springs, whereas our friends had free access as they were Tabacon guests. I actually preferred the look and feel of the Tabacon more than the Lost Iguana, but that could just be me. On the plus side, our view from the Lost Iguana was perfect of the volcano and we were lucky to be there on perfect days and saw several eruptions and also the red lava. But then again, our friends at the Tabacon had similar views! All in all, if you like a quaint, bed & breakfast type of place, go to the Lost Iguana. If you are like me, and prefer being where people are and more of a "hotel" feel, go to the Tabacon.
Would like to add, however, that the people at the Lost Iguana were very friendly, regardless!
We booked two rooms to stay at the Lost Iguana over new years weekend this past January. I called and spoke to both their US travel office that handles reservations and the resort office itself to book the reservation. We received confirmation of the booking a few days later and were looking forward to a wonderful few days at Arenal. Just weeks before we were to stay, the owner of the resort called to cancel our reservation. She claimed that her staff was "incompetent" and made double bookings without her knowing. I explained to her the difficulty of finding a place at such a late date and asked that she attempt to help rebook us being that she was in CR and had a better knowledge of the area. She said that everything was booked and nothing could be done. I was shocked by her unprofessional behavior and her unwillingness to help us remedy the situation which was their fault.
We were forced to rearrange our entire trip in the end. We did finally make it to Arenal and stayed at the Tabacon resort - a very beautiful and wonderful place to stay. We saw the outside of the Lost Iguana resort while in Arenal and the location seemed nice. But I would have extreme reservations about booking/staying at a place that cannot even honor a confirmed reservation.
Wow! Construction NOT an issue. Connecting rooms?
Just got back from CR and spent the first two nights at Lost Iguana Resort. Only communication issue was that we had a confirmation for connecting rooms but there really AREN'T any as far as we could tell. My wife and I stayed in a luxury suite and were very very comfortable with our 15 and 12 yr olds staying two doors away in a standard room. We had understood that the rooms connect but there weren't connecting doors of the US type in either of the rooms. LIR is a bit remote in a positive way and so we felt very safe there with our kids just down from us in the same building. They felt safe too - really liked being separate as a matter of fact. LIR was a perfect place for us - several other families with kids the same age as ours. Very clean and well laid out property. Breakfast was excellent, other meals were good, staff was very pleasant and the property is really nice. Views of the volcano have to be the best by far in the area.
LOVED this place, and I am sure it will be even better once the spa is done. We stayed in the owners villa, amazing volcano view, comfortable bed, kids on the pull out couch were happy. Lovely deck, Toucans visited, really peaceful. Included breakfast was delicious, lunch and dinner not so much. They arrange great trips, loved the white water rafting and the zip line tour-don't wait to do your zip line tour at the beach,the ones in arenal are the best. the only problem with this hotel is it is far from everything- the town of la fortuna is 1/2 hour away, but that didn't bother us, we wanted peace and quiet. the staff was very helpful and nice, smoothies upon arrival were delicious, the pools were small but very nice (hot one up top), the walk to the hanging bridges is lovely (but steep as is everything here)- hanging briges were beautiful as well but not for the faint of heart. Service at the pool quite slow, the whole place is slow, but we liked that.
Great hotel near Mt. Arenal
My wife and I just spent 11 days in Costa Rica travelling all around the entire country. We spent 2 nights in Arenal at a new hotel called the Hotel Lost Iguana. I think they only have 30 rooms---all spacious, air-conditioned, cable TV, some with a view of Mr. Arenal from the balcony. Free breakfast in the mornings. Very helpful, friendly staff. There is only one drawback---the hotel is located near the Lake Arenal dam quite a few miles from the town of Fortuna so it might be a problem staying there if you don't have a car. There is literally nothing close by. It is much nicer than the over-priced, over-crowded and over-rated 'Tabacon Hot Springs Resort.
Gorgeous Rooms, Incredible Views
The Lost Iguana is a gem is the middle of the rainforest. We reserved a deluxe suite and couldn't have been happier. The room was beautiful. Really well appointed and nicely decorated. Very spacious and the view was to die for. We had a spectacular view of the volcano from our balcony. The jacuzzi tub for two on the balcony was an added romantic touch. The only complaint I have about this resort is the quality of the food. The food and the service needs some work. This is important as when you are in Arenal you are limited to eating at the hotel you are staying at as there really isn't any town to drive to and driving isn't an option on Costa Rican roads at night anyway. The food wasn't terrible, it just wasn't great. The resort is less than a year old and is still building. At this time you have to go thru the restaurant to check in and to use the internet, you have to borrow the front desk computer. They have notices saying that this will change and they are building a business center for check-in and for business services.
I loved this hotel despite the food issues and would go back in a second. Be forewarned though, the road leading to the hotel is horrendous, typical of Costa Rica, you think you are going to break your hips just getting there from the drive!!
I was on crutches the time I was there and the staff couldn't have been more helpful to me even offering to bring me my meals to my room including the free breakfast. Didn't take them up on it, but it seemed most people in Costa Rica will bend over backwards to help you if you re nice to them.
Amazing view, Great food.
The rooms were very clean and comfortable. Everything is beautiful and new. We had the most amazing view from our room. We woke up and fell asleep to the Valcano each day. The hanging bridges are wonderful (10 min hike from the hotel) and your tickets are half price. Lost Iguana is about a 15 min car ride from Fortuna, however, it is nice to be away from all the tourists. We were still able to experience everything Fortuna had to offer (the ATV tour and the hot springs). Personally, I was glad to stay outside of the touristy area where the views were much better. The staff was very accomodating and the food was wonderful. If you have the extra money to spend, I suggest upgrading to the suite. The Jacuzzi overlooking the Valcano was EXCELLENT. If you are going to stay there I suggest bringing a few things to snack on. The hotel is great for meals, but not so good for snacking. Also they don't have a great champagne or wine list - so I suggest bringing your own. They have a fridge in everyroom. Overall I would give our experience 4 and a half circles.
Visited Arenal in February 2005 and loved our stay at the Lost Iguana. Its a long way out of La Fortuna, past Tabacon and the national park entrance and closer to Lake Arenal. The resort has a beautiful setting on a hillside, seemingly in the middle of nowhere and the rooms face out on the volcano. The rooms were colorfully furnished, with large bathrooms, air conditioning and all rooms had terraces or balconies facing the volcano with typical wood rocking chairs. (So comforatble we bought a pair in Sarchi.) There is some construction underway for a reception area, but it is remote from the rooms and there was no problem with noise. Actually the problem with noise is that the frogs are partying all night long and though hard to spot, they make a lot of racket. Really.
The pool area has both cool and heated pools for swimming and an attractive swim-up bar. We spent one rainy afternoon in the pool taking to other travelers and enjoyed it very much.
The staff was excellent and very helpful. The hotel is small and the remote setting is far from other activities but we never had any problem booking a cab or van transfer for activities. We has excellent dinners and one lunch at the resort, and prices were reasonable (a steal compared to Tabacon).
One advantage to staying here is that Hanging Bridges is a short walk away and you can purchase half price tickets at the front desk. Hanging Bridges is a spectacular setting, lush and great views with suspension bridges and a hiking trail through a protected primary forest. Very lush. Because the path is paved with hollow concrete blocks, the walking is relatively easy. The Lost Iguana has other hiking trails up above the resort which are more challenging, especially when it's been raining. Lots of birds in the area.
Great base for someone spending several days in the area. There's hiking in the national park, kayaking on Lake Arenal and whitewater rafting on the Arenal River which was great fun and lots of wildlife spotting.
Un-der contstruction & Un-eventful at The Lost Iguana
Before travelling to CR, I did a ton of research in order to plan the 'perfect' trip and was actually very disappointed when we arrived at The Lost Iguana Resort. I am even sorry to say that we were disappointed with our stay here because we really wanted to enjoy it. We stayed at 3 different hotels/resorts while in CR and this was the one we were least pleased with. The resort is actually located in a great area of CR but the resort is still under-construction and you get this feeling wherever you go on the grounds. There's also not much to do, especially at night, thus we felt very disconnected from everything and it actually seemed like we were the only guests staying there. In fact, I think we saw only 1 other guest the entire time we were there.
The problem with the resort is that everything is just okay, almost boring and bland, which is not what we were looking for in a resort/hotel while on vacation. The food is just okay, the grounds are just okay, the rooms are just okay. I will admit that the showers are very nice and the staff is friendly, the views of the volcano are absolutely stunning - however the view didn't make up for the lack of activity at the resort. We felt like we were in a ghost town. The Lost Iguana wants to be an amazing "resort" but just doesn't even come close. Possibly when all of the construction is complete it will be closer to it's dream. We were itching to leave the Lost Iguana from the moment we arrived and will not return. Stay someplace else where there is more activity and you get your money's worth.