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Hotel Le Peace lodge Hotel 4 star
Easyexperts
Alajuela, Costa Rica -
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Margot Millier Section editor

Overlooking the superb educational park of "La Paz Waterfall Gardens" in the heart of the Costa Rican forest, the Peace Lodge is in a unique location and resembles a small "Disney hotel" dedicated to nature. Fully adapted to its American guests who come in their numbers, the various available facilities allow you to enjoy all the comforts of a hotel, with a magnificent panoramic view. Do not be put off, however, by the extremely unusual and kitsch nature of the rooms.

This hotel review is a translation from the French version published on our French site Easyvoyage.com.

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    Location 7.48 /10

    A 1hr 20 min drive (40 mi) from San JosÚ international airport, the Peace Lodge, in the heart of the forest, is actually located 20 minutes away from Poas volcano and an hour away from Alajuela.

    Accommodation 8.45 /10

    The Peace Lodge only has 17 rooms including 8 De luxe, 8 standard and one villa - they are not so easy to come by! In general, there are 4 rooms per building, accessible via various outdoor staircases. They each bear the name of a butterfly and a small label indicates the name of the expected guests. Once inside their chalet, the guests can appreciate the comfort and warm character of these kitsch rooms, 60 to 80 m▓, depending on the chosen category. Very high, the large four-poster bed with a mosquito net is surrounded by orange walls, a wooden ceiling and parquet, a fireplace and mahogany-coloured furniture. Fir-green fabrics dominate this mountainous universe. The connecting rooms are equipped with a TV with 27 channels (including several film channels), a free safe, a well-stocked mini-bar with tea and coffee facilities, a direct telephone line, a radio alarm, a CD player and numerous videos. The large patio doors and the wide balcony furnished with an outdoor jacuzzi, a hammock and some plants provides the ideal setting for you to admire the beauty of the panorama. Extremely unusual, the bathrooms are a little world of their own, decorated with three large mirrors, two painted sinks, a wooden sink unit, stained glass windows and wrought iron plant designs hanging down from the ceiling. In the large 25m▓ De Luxe rooms, you will find a waterfall on the side of the bath tub and a smaller one, flowing from stones, to be used as a shower. There is also: a separate toilet, a hair-dryer, bathrobes, slippers and hospitality products. Room service is available from 6:00 am to 9:00 pm.

    Overview 7.70 /10

    You will drive along a small road surrounded by dense vegetation before you come across the five tall buildings of the Peace Lodge. They all face a valley invaded by lush green vegetation and they all overlook a splendid 69 acre park which opened in 1998. Five years later, the hotel welcomed its first guests. The park is busy with people who come and visit it for a day or half a day - without staying at the hotel. The inevitable souvenir shop and restaurants at the entrance to the park are not situated in the same building as the hotel entrance with it's huge lobby fitted out in wood. However, the different places are connected to one another, through stairs, intermediary areas and small corridors. Everything here leans towards artificiality and unscrupulous consumption. European guests will recognise the coarse reproduction of the decoration of Austrian chalets, particularly in the rooms. Adjacent to one of the buildings, an open-air swimming pool awaits the visitors who are in need of relaxation. There is another one at the hotel spa.

    Food and drink 7.45 /10

    In the various restaurants, including two buffet and two Ó la carte restaurants, the few hotel guests and the numerous visitors of the park take their meals together. Consequently, the comings and goings, like everywhere in the hotel, are incessant and it's very noisy. The Vista Poas restaurant is open for dinner from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm and has three different services. The setting is very pleasant thanks to the bamboo ceiling, the wrought iron chairs and, in particular, the panorama. On the menu: chicken, beef, fish, pasta or even vegetarian dishes. Below this and outdoors, guests can enjoy a buffet open for breakfast from 7:00 am to 10:00 am and lunch from 11:00 am to 4:00 pm. For the latter, you have the choice of 14 ingredients to create your own salad, 9 hot dishes and 2 or 3 different sorts of pizza. In the park, a large open-air but sheltered area is an invitation to visitors for a snack and a break. As is the case with the bar in the park, it is no longer accessible well before 5:00 pm when the place shuts. Once again, do not look for any refined food on your plate!

    To know

    The park is a wonderful step along the way to discovering the wealth of Costa Rica in terms of flora and wildlife. After walking across 2.5 mi of dense vegetation (for the bravest among you!), all the visitors are delighted to have seen the 5 waterfalls flowing from various heights, including the aviary, the butterfly house, the orchid garden, the snake pit, the frog pond, the (reconstruction of a) traditional Costa Rican house, and the lake full of trout, etc.

    A stay at the Peace lodge is limited to 4 nights. 90% of the clientele come from the United States. On arrival, a 15 minute massage is offered to you, with a direct view of the surrounding nature. Keep in mind that the staff who work both at the hotel and at the entry gates to the park are not really available!

    Accommodation tip:
    Book as early as possible if you wish to stay here!

    Equipment

    • Internet access
    • Spa

      massage

    • Swimming pool
    • Whirlpool bath

    advantage

    • Ideal for visiting the very busy, but magnificent park
    • There is a multitude of species from Costa Rica for you to discover
    • In the heart of the forest
    • The panorama displaying the beauty of nature
    • The comfort

    disadvantages

    • A temple of consumerism orientated towards nature.
    • Fully adapted to the American clientele.
    • Very kitsch and over the top decoration
    • Fast food-like restaurant services
    • The reception
    • Very busy

    Traveller Reviews

    • Overall Score nc/10