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“Fantastic. Amazing staff.”
Review of Villa Decary

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Villa Decary
Ranked #2 of 12 Nuevo Arenal B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
51 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Fantastic. Amazing staff.”
Reviewed 29 March 2012

Villa Decary is a gem. The rooms are simple but attractive and spotlessly clean. The bungalow we stayed in, Casita Serenoa, was large, and plenty of room for our family of 2 adults and a child. The breakfast is great, and more than ample for a start to the day. The grounds are beautiful, there are lovely views of the lake, and we had excellent luck birdwatching on the property. I liked the location in Nuevo Arenal: close enough to Arenal to do activities like Ecoglide and the Hanging Bridges at that end of the lake, but far enough away from the congestion of all the hotels and visitors in Arenal proper. It's about a 35 minute drive from Villa Decary to the Hanging Bridges and maybe a 45-50 minute drive to Ecoglide. That adds a bit to your travel time, but it's well worth it to feel like you have the lake to yourself. There are kayak rentals nearby, and on a clear day you can actually see both Arenal and Tenorio from some spots in the lake. But the best part of the inn is the staff. Dan is a gracious host, and although Suzy was out of town during our stay, she was always very helpful in advance of our arrival and great at communicating quickly by email. Miguel is warm and friendly, and immediately made us feel at home. As soon as we arrived he was finalizing plans for our first activity for that afternoon. Finally, Elkin is a remarkable part of the team. We took the tour to his family farm up in the mountains, and it was extraordinary. He and his family made us feel welcome as we got a chance to see life on a Costa Rican farm and share a meal. We learned a great deal from him and I am really grateful to have had the opportunity to share this experience with my 9 year old son. The trip takes most of a day, and is best with a 4WD vehicle; it includes hiking in the forest on the farm, and is completely worth it if you have the time to do it. The staff also arranged other excursions for us, which I found to be a plus, because as it was our first trip to CR and we didn't have a clear understanding of the geography of the region, communicating with all the different activity locales and making reservations would have been difficult. In addition to the farm visit, they arranged a guided nature tour at Hanging Bridges, an excellent naturalist (Mario) to do a bird walk on the property, kayaking on the lake and reservations at the Gingerbread Restaurant which is just down the road. I would recommend the property to a friend, and will stay here again if we ever return to the area.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Susan C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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317 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (66)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cayucos, California
Level Contributor
26 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 28 March 2012

My husband and I stayed in this hotel on our recent trip to Costa Rica. I really love this place. The rooms were creative, comfortable and shiney clean. I have never seen windows that crystal clear. Bird watching from bed with a cup of coffee was a gift I had not anticipated. When we returned home, I emailed the lodge. I gave them one to glow on and one to grow on. I received a response right away. They appreciated my compliment and my suggestion. This business is really trying to be the best it can be.

Room Tip: If you are a bird watcher, ask if you can overlook the bird feeder.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank denise o
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 March 2012

My husband and I highly recommend this small B & B. On a trip around northern Costa Rica, staying in several hotels, their room was the best we had - large, colorful, immaculate, with a spectacular view of Lake Arenal. Breakfast was excellent both days. We enjoyed strolling around the lush grounds, viewing birds and listening to the howlers. Our host Dan was very helpful and the staff bent over backwards to assist us. We are actually going back and bringing relatives.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Laura B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
45 reviews
18 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 March 2012

Highly recommend this small, quiet property for bird watchers and nature lovers.
Clean and comfortable accommodations. Helpful and friendly staff from owner to official greeter, Olivia. Excellent breakfasts. Landscaping and birding were outstanding. The lake view was beautiful and the area peaceful. Wifi in reception allowed us to keep in touch and it was great NOT to have phone or television.
Very nice restaurants and bakeries nearby (recommend La Paneria TuTu and Moya's). Used the bank and grocery in town and found staff to be very helpful.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled with family
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    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank lidobraco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Flemington, New Jersey
Level Contributor
41 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 March 2012

We stayed here a while back and I'm glad it's getting the recognition it deserves. The owners are fantastic and very helpful. The breakfast is delicious and we had the best view of Lake Arenal! The grounds are well kept and we were able to see a lot of wildlife around the immediate area. We came back to Costa Rica this year but were unable to stop by as our plans didn't allow for it but next time we shall come back as it is a truly remarkable place.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Karson Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Dalton, Georgia
Level Contributor
28 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 10 March 2012

We found this place by recommendation of another hotel we were at that was full (Gingerbread) and so glad we did.
The owners are great, very accommodating and helpful.
The most amazing was the birds - since we were there in early March, much of the fruit was in season and this brought in the birds. They let us snap some great shots.
The hotel is very nice - ours had 2 double beds and ceiling to floor windows that over look Lake Arenal. A screen door allow access to the (very private) deck area.
A great find!

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Gina S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oxford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
30 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 March 2012

We stayed for one night at this lovely hotel in Nuevo Arenal. The visit was delightful right from the welcome when we arrived (early), the staff were so helpful and friendly, and the room was gorgeous. The hotel consists of a main wing and some smaller properties, scattered over a seven acre site, with its own short trail through the rain forest. Our room, in the main wing, was delightful, decorated with Central and South America arts and crafts; it had a beautiful private balcony, overlooking the garden, the forest (with colourful tropical birds everywhere) and the lake beyond. Our beds were comfortable, and the recommended restaurant "Gingerbread" (a short walk down the road), gave us a delicious evening meal. Breakfast was gorgeous - fruit (of course) and local tortilla and torta. The owner Dan and his friendly staff couldn't have been more helpful. Highly recommended alternative to the bigger more commercial hotels in the area. You couldn't have better bird watching anywhere in the area. Sit still for long enough, and they all fly past you.

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MaggyS100
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Villa Decary

Property: Villa Decary
Address: Mile East of Town 1 | Route 142, Nuevo Arenal 50807, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Region: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Nuevo Arenal
Amenities:
Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 12 B&Bs / Inns in Nuevo Arenal
Number of rooms: 8
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Lake Arenal's most beautiful hotel. Botanical garden and rain forest setting, spectacular views of Lake Arenal, the Tilaran Mountains and the rain forest. All accommodations have private entry, private hot water bathroom, private deck, orthopedic mattresses. Rates include scrumptious breakfasts, beautifully served. Casitas with full kitchens available. Monkeys, 140 species of birds. Peaceful, private, serene. Close to many activities: kayaking, fishing, hot springs, volcano, birding, canopy tours, windsurfing, horseback riding, nature walks and more. Great eateries nearby. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Villa Decary Hotel Nuevo Arenal
Villa Decary Costa Rica/Nuevo Arenal

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