Luxury in the jungle doesn’t get much better than this. Built by owners John and Karen Lewis and now managed by the Cayuga chain of ecolodges, this trailblazing hotel was one of the first to put ecotourism on the Osa Peninsula map. Rooms are spacious, private, and oriented toward the ocean, with high-peaked thatched roofs and open screen walls (no glass). A small tropical garden and large deck, complete with outdoor shower and hammock, more than double the living space. (There’s also an indoor shower open to the elements except for a screen, with vegetation for privacy.) Rooms are housed in a series of units stretching in a line down the spine of a mountain ridge. If you get one of the lower units, be prepared for a bit of a hike to and from the main lodge, restaurant, and pool area. As is common in the area, the main lodge and restaurant feature a high thatched roof overhead. There’s a large spiral staircase leading up to a great lookout, and even if you can’t afford to stay here, it’s a great place to stop for a cocktail. Lapa Ríos sits on a 400-hectare (988-acre) private rainforest reserve, with a well-maintained trail system and an abundance of flora and fauna. Activities included with lodging include birding tours, jungle and waterfall hikes, night walks, and tours of a local school. Note that there’s Wi-Fi here only in one common area.
- Frommer's Staff