Hotel Heliconia3.0 out of 5.0
Recent guest reviews
No way is this a 3 star hotel, it might just make two. The rooms at the top of the hill are variable, some are unnecessarily vast and cavernous with zero character, others are more acceptable. All have a huge problem with access, especially in the rain and for those of more advanced age. Wifi is also non-existent in these rooms. Breakfast was the worst we had in Central America. There are better hotels in Saint Elena.
The rooms were very simple the one we occupied had an ugly smell, the beds are comfortable and the layout of the hotel is a bit confusing. The breakfast offered included a very poor quality breakfast served cold and did not have great flavor I would have preferred to go eat somewhere else breakfast.
We were booked at this hotel by a tour operator and were a bit nervous when we saw the reviews on here. Firstly, if you are visiting a place such as Monteverde which is known for being a place of nature, you are staying in a rainforest etc and it's not the most affluent area- don't expect a 5 star hotel and pristine rooms, it's not going to happen! Yes, it's humid and clothes don't dry but that would be the same regardless of where you stayed in Monteverde as you're literally staying in a cloud!!! Rooms were clean and comfortable, no need for air con whatsoever. Breakfast was as expected, same as everywhere we've been. Shuttle service was available when needed with bags but really wasn't that far a walk. 15 min walk downhill into town, lots of places to eat there. Buses to Monteverde etc and really easy to book excursions. Friendly staff. My advice is do your research before you come. If you're not one for staying in a jungle and hate the sight of spiders, ants, scorpions etc, then Monteverde probably isn't the best place for you. Most criticisms of this hotel would apply to anywhere you stayed in Monteverde. Loved our time there!
This hotel was ok. We were placed at the top and it is a hike up there on steep (often slippery after rain) slopes. On the plus side being at the top granted us really good views. A free shuttle service up should be provided not only when you arrive and depart. Rooms were quite basic but alright. Breakfast was equally basic but alright except for some weird deep fried balls of something that just tasted of oil and fat and the slowest toaster in Costa Rica. Staff were nice and views were great but the location had nothing. We ate one night in the nearby Italian which was very nice but very pricey. We tried a place next door the next night and it was cheaper but the food was awful. We did a hike in the cloud forest which was very nice but we didn’t see a lot of wildlife, mostly some birds. I think in the organisational phase with Imagine latin America this should have been trimmed to one night instead of 2 in Monteverde. We could have left the next day, after the hike, as we were bored and wanted to be off. Or we even could have removed that part of the trip for somewhere else. I think advice from someone who knew the area might have helped here when I was planning this as I got this wrong and no-one advised me otherwise. 1 night or even not bother with Monteverde at all is what I would pass on to others. Or do a day trip from somewhere else which some do.
We stayed here also for 2 nights as part of our explore tour. We were in the highest block up the hill rooms were spacious and very clean ( yes we had to walk down the hill but really?), view was magnificent, breakfast was tasty. As for insects we saw a few but none in our room but if we had it would have been the 'Adventure' in adventure travel presumably the reason why most people come to Costa Rica! We stayed in 7 different hotels and this was hands down our favourite. Pura Vida!!
After reading the reviews posted on here I was really worried about staying at this hotel for two nights as part of our Explore tour. My worries were unfounded! Our room was large clean and comfortable with no apparent guests of the insect variety. The hot water wasn't always the hottest but this is to be expected when travelling. The room was a little dark but not a problem. We stayed in the rooms at the very top of the hill so did have a five minute walk down to reception. There was a shuttle service available both ways if you wished to take it, and on one occasion the driver was offsite and the receptionist provided a taxi for us to go back up with no cost to us. The views are magnificent and the hotel charming, if you are expecting five star luxury you will not find it here but if you want great views, helpful staff and a clean comfortable place to stay then please give it a try. Situated a $4 ride from town the location is perfectly acceptable. Thank you for an enjoyable place to stay!
I stayed at this hotel because it was part of the accommodations package in a tour that I purchased along with other people who were in my group, none of whom I knew prior to this trip. The package I purchased was supposed to furnish us with premium, though not luxury, accommodations. After checking into the Heliconia and being there for less than a night, I wrote an email to the tour group company to tell them how bad it was. Below restates my first email and then followed up by another the next day. In short: DO NOT STAY HERE. Firstly, the rooms are musty and have the smell that accompanies it (my room had an old rug but other rooms had tiles). While, yes, we were up in the mountains, it still gets humid at night, as was the case when I stayed there, and there were no fans in the room nor were there screens on the small windows that did exist. Meaning if you wanted air circulation, you must open the windows and let the bugs in—something most were not keen on, including everyone (15 people) in my group. Secondly, I uploaded a collection of photos I took when I came into the room. They included worn-off labels on two plastic pump bottles that have no indication to what is really contained in them, a missing hair dryer (which I later learned they have at the front desk, 200m away, but they don’t tell you that in advance), the light on the magnifying mirror didn’t work, there was a missing soap dispenser in the shower, missing cover on the bolts of the toilet, and dirty sheets which I had to request be replaced. When I brought them down to the front desk and told them they was dirty, I was asked to show the specific spots of dirt. And that was just the first night. As a cherry on top, wherever the router was located, their wifi was no where near as strong to reach and provide support to rooms that are 200+ meters away. So the only way to get wifi access was to walk outside down rocky pavement and steps to use the restaurant network which is password protected. A delightful experience when it's raining, dark and slippery. In addition, the front desk gentleman showed me lukewarm hospitality when I asked about getting another towel. I was traveling solo and was sharing a room with another traveler. In my bathroom, there were 2 body-sized towels and one smaller towel which I didn't think was enough for both of us. When I asked the front desk for another hand towel or smaller towel, he told me they only have one size. That seemed quite strange seeing as how I had three different sized towels in my room including the very small one placed next to the unlabeled bottles. Nonetheless, I asked if I could get another body-sized one, which he so ungraciously got for me. When I thanked him, he did not respond. It had dust and hair on it, so I can imagine that he probably dropped it, took it from the floor or who knows what else. Day two was no better. Breakfast was supposed to be served at 6:30am and by 6:50am, when people are coming in to eat in preparation of a 7:30am departure, two of the foods (eggs and bacon) had yet to be brought out. Furthermore, some of the bread they served was moldy. In addition, I left my room at 7:30am and returned at 6:00pm to find that the lockbox in my room and other rooms of people in my group mysteriously no longer worked so we had to wait for someone to come and fix all of them. Then, I see that my bed and room has not been touched. No housekeeping. No emptying garbage. No making of the beds. Nothing. While the bathroom was spacious and grounds were decent and had pretty views, in my opinion, this was not a hotel but a glorified hostel.
I was travelling with a group of 31 high school students as a chaperone. My room mate was another teacher. --Our room: box springs sat directly on the floor with dirty looking (maybe just stained?) sheets directly on top of the mattresses (no mattress cover) with thick, grungy blankets; curtains were filthy; very dark; toilet seat didn't fit the toilet; leaky sink; one container of blue liquid soap provided; bathroom door knob broken. When we got there I closed the bathroom door to use the bathroom and got locked in. When I turned the door knob to get out, it just went in circles. I finally realized that if I pulled out on the knob and turned it just right, I could get out. We did not close the bathroom door all the way during the rest of our stay because we did not want to get locked in. One night at 2 a.m. when my room mate got up to go to use the bathroom, she found a 3-4" long scorpion in our bathroom. The front desk did not answer the phone so we walked down the steep, dark incline to the office where we found two security guards. One told us the scorpions weren't poisonous and were really common, but he agreed to come up to our room to get it out. Several of our students found scorpions in their rooms as well. One of our guides had one in her bed. We were told they do bite and it stings. --The incline: The rooms are in separate buildings with the main office where breakfast is served at the bottom. The buildings are set far apart on an extremely steep long hill. You have to carry your own luggage and it is slippery when wet. --Reception/Lobby Area: Dead bugs all over; straightened up; playing cards available --Breakfast: sticky tables, unappetizing food, good pineapple (but refilling the bowl took a while) --Staff: friendly enough; tried to be helpful when we requested clean sheets --Internet: did not work in our rooms
We were placed here by our travel group otherwise there is no way we would have chosen to stay here It rains a lot in Monteverde so that coupled with the drabness of the rooms makes it a very depressing place to be! The rooms are very old fashioned with bed linen which looks like it was last changed in about 1972 and furniture that Noah would have been proud of. There are no bedside lights, no hairdriers and the water could go from scolding to freezing in seconds. The shower was very difficult to get into with a lot of black mould around the edges of the bath. Everything stays damp and a couple of pairs of pants I washed out whilst there didn't dry out in 3 days. The room had an unpleasant smell but when we mentioned it to the reception staff we were met with complete indifference. We bought an air freshener ! The much commented on breakfast lived up to expectations as we found mould on the bread on the first morning ( it was the usual CS fare) so abandoned it the next day for the bakery just down the road. Lots of steep steps to get to the rooms so totally unsuitable for those with mobility issues or small children. As our group decided, this place put the hell in Heliconia. For us 3 days in Monteverde was one too many and 3 nights in the Heliconia was 3 too many.
Pros and cons 1. It is nicely secluded 2. Tree house style rooms were wonderful big Windows in the trees. 3. Actually stilt type construction about 10ft in the air. 4. Restaurant was very good, only moderately pricey. $40 dinner for two 5. Beautiful foliage all around 6. Secluded also means further away from town, $45 taxi ride round trip. 7. AC was ok but did not blast cold in daytime it kept room about 80 8. They offer adventures from there to volcanoes, trekking, atv, etc. 9. Store on site is extremely limited 10. Fridge in room did nice, we stopped at grocery on the way. 11. 3 hour ride from airport 12. Closest town is La Fortuna, really nice little town, friendly. 13. At the hotel most spoke some English but I tried to practice my Spanish mostly. 14. In La Fortuna about 50% spoke English. 15. This area is probably the most natural, real Costa Rica. From here we went to the beach area and it is very different, touristy We did the zip lining tour near the volcanoe, pretty incredible. We enjoyed shipping in town and we relaxed at the hotel
Reviews from Trip Advisor
41% of guests recommend this hotelTotal of 393 reviews