Hotel Arenal Kioro.
Being born in El Salvador, volcanoes are definitely part of your horizon. But, since I left when I was very young, I don’t remember any of my visits to the volcanoes of home.
Seeing el Volcano Arenal truly took my breath away, although it is no longer active, you can still see this amazing structure spew large plumes of white smoke. Imagine this right outside of your window and what you wake up to every single morning.
That’s Hotel Arenal Kioro.
After leaving El Silencio Lodge, we made our way to Arenal and La Fortuna. Our new guide, Mario, met us at El Silencio and he took over for Diego for the rest of our trip.
It was a long trek but, we made a few stops on the way. We arrived in Arenal to a beautiful hotel resort that is nestled in the mountain side with the Volcan Arenal as your backdrop. We were greeted by the staff and since it is a family-owned and operated resort, we met the owner and his son who were both very attentive, friendly and welcoming.
Pictured above was our home for the next two nights and we had to be driven to the top of the hill because we were pretty high up. We checked in and we were given a delicious Pina Colada as a welcome drink and the wonderful hostess discussed the hotel and the amenities we could take advantage of as their guests.
All the Comforts of Home and More!
We were given the Family Suite and it came with two Queen beds, a sofa bed, full bathroom, shower and jacuzzi. It was basically like an entire house on one level, just for you. We had a full view of the volcano and it was absolutely stunning.
We kind of chuckled because we had two Queen beds and we felt like we were back in the 50’s when they slept apart. My husband joked that we should push the beds together. But, in all honesty, we didn’t mind the two beds–we each took one and slept in the clouds with all the space we could possibly want. Plus, studies have shown that couples that sleep apart get better sleep so, we can survive a couple nights!
The full-size jacuzzi was absolutely amazing. The whole suite had two large floor to ceiling windows that displayed a picturesque view of Volcan Arenal and we were able to wake-up nice and early, shower and then hop into the jacuzzi and watch the volcano smoke.
Exploring the Grounds.
After the helpful staff assisted us in settling in, we decided to explore the grounds (that boast 27 acres) and get in our swim suits to go to the pool and then the thermal hot springs that run on the property. We walked through the winding paths through the mountain and the gorgeous and lush greenery and gardens and made our way down to the springs. The paths are well-lit the entire way to the public areas.
There was a covered area that had a full bar and a host of sun lounges for you to use. The bar is named Bar El Higuerón and is located near the hot springs. You can enjoy a delicious cocktail, tropical juice or national beer.
We walked to the pool and swam while the volcano was our back drop and companion. We went to the hot springs and while there was a lot of people enjoying them, we were able to find one that was available and we got in.
How can I possibly describe the feeling of hot thermal springs? Hmm, euphoric? As soon as we sat down, it was an immediate release. Sighhhh. All your stresses melt away. I closed my eyes, got neck deep and just completely got lost in the relaxation and zen. We then went over to the flowing spring and just closed our eyes and listened to the primal sounds of nature. It was early dusk and then out of nowhere, it started raining.
Could it have been anymore perfect?
We sat in the hot spring for a while longer as the refreshing rain fell upon us. We got out as it got stronger and made our 10 minute walk back up to our suite in the pouring rain. I haven’t played in the rain or have been so carefree in decades and taking my time and not caring was so freeing. We even stopped and saw a HUGE bull frog climbing a wall near our suite, I have never seen one so big in my life!
We got to our suite and showered, the shower is ginormous by the way, and it’s almost like a rainshower in there. We got ready for dinner and headed back to the main building to the restaurant on the third floor.
Dine Beside the Volcan.
The Heliconia’s is their main restaurant, located on the third floor with an excellent volcano view. It is decorated with tropical flowers from their gardens and beautiful coral stones tables. You can eat your breakfast buffet and Dinner a la carte here.
The restaurants in this hotel were good. I can’t put in the amazing category but, I enjoyed it. The first night I had a steak and the second night I had a burger. We had breakfast at Heliconias and it was tasty and buffet-style, we had our lunches off the property and on our excursions that I will tell you all about next.
The staff went above and beyond and were always keen to lend a hand when needed and every person we met always had a smile on their face and made our stay wonderful. If you wonder about any extra guests in your room, we only had a few harmless geckos in our room that we seldom heard and never saw. I only mention it because before I visited Costa Rica, I always wanted to know what to expect.
The Hotel Arenal Kioro carried out environmental studies to cause the least impact possible during the construction and operation of the project.
The property has a sewage treatment plant, smart systems for energy saving, recycling program, its own springs, saving water plans, large windows throughout the Hotel’s facilities that allow it to take advantage of the natural light and ventilation. It also counts with other projects and policies that prove our environmental commitment.
They give first category service and respecting the touristic sustainability policies.
So, if you’ve noticed, I’ve used one word often in my Hotel Kioro review and that word is zen. That is the overall feeling that you experience at this hotel. The gardens are like walking in the Garden of Eden, the hot springs are rejuvenating and blissful and the suites are 5 stars.
The only thing that makes me give this resort a 4.5 is the dining experience. I definitely would stay here again because it’s simply beautiful and I was so relaxed and I’d want to give the restaurants another whirl.
For releasing your stress in absolute natural luxury, stay at Hotel Kioro.[usrlist Sleep-Quality:5 Rooms:5 Cleanliness:5 Dining:4 Location:5]
Make sure to head on over to Hotel Arenal Kioro’s website, here. You can see videos and maybe you’ll even book your stay if you’re heading or thinking of visiting Costa Rica. Stay tuned for my next post about the activities we took part in when we were in the Arenal and La Fortuna area.
Have you ever used thermal hot springs before?
Let me know, til then–cheers m’deres!
Nancy Polanco is a freelance journalist and editor of lifestyle blog Whispered Inspirations. A social media junkie, a travel-lover with insatiable wanderlust and an aficionado for fun gadgets, good eats, and entertainment. You can find her on Instagram and everywhere else under @WhispersInspire.