Sitting at the base of the majestic Arenal Volcano in the northern part of Costa Rica is Lake Arenal, the biggest lake in Costa Rica. Situated on the top of a hill overlooking the lake we found the Laguna Arenal hotel.
Catching up with the owners Bastiaan & Milena, they share with us their vision of what it is like to live right next to paradise.
“When we first saw this property it was farmland with cows walking around but the view over lake Arenal was so unique and special. We wanted to have a minimal impact on the natural landscape so instead of a big concrete foundation we built all the bungalows and buildings on pylons so all the structures are above ground and even the wildlife can walk underneath.”
“We designed and built the individual bungalows from the guest's perspective. We wanted guests to feel connected with the stunning nature outside. From every corner of your room, even from the bathroom you can see a view of the lake. From outside the buildings have mirrored glass so as much as possible the nature is reflected and the structure seems to be a part of the landscape.”
“The surrounding area and nature was so beautiful we wanted the rooms to be just as beautiful inside as the outside area. We were inspired by Dutch Architect, Jan des Bouvrie. His clean all white minimal aesthetics are light and airy. It was very simple and pure but luxurious at the same time.”
“We believe when you have too many details it's complicated and can disturb your mind. We designed the buildings to have clean aesthetics. The roofs are slanted and the water drains are hidden within the walls. We believe the simplicity and clean lines where everything is aligned, allows the mind to be at ease so guests can enjoy their stay more.”
“In fact one of our guest was a writer from the States who had all types of activities planned like ziplining, the volcano hikes but she didn’t do any activities. Once she was in the room and sitting on her balcony looking at the landscape she never left the property. She was an influencer and was working on a book but never was in the right mood to finish writing the book because her life was so hectic and busy. She intended to stay for 3 days but wound up staying for 3 weeks and was able to finish writing her book. She was so inspired by the nature and what she experienced just from her room. She was able to relax and was given the space and peace at our property to do that."
“We’ve been open only a few years and already have many repeat customers. We are often told by customers they wished they had booked more nights here so they often come back. I think they come back for the pureness of life here and to be disconnected from their frantic, complicated, busy daily life. We are on the top of a mountain and there is no traffic, we do not have TV’s in the room, you hear the wind, the birds, nature all around and you can truly unwind.”
“The views from the dining area are absolutely stunning. We can seat 16-20 people. The kitchen serves fresh and local sourced farm to table food. We do not have a menu but do a bespoke service where we ask guests their preferences. Milena gets the best fresh products that day. We have what I call a truly open kitchen concept. The guest has a conversation with the chef and we come up with the plan for dinner."
The modern bungalows offer privacy, relaxation and the most serene views and the owners Bastiaan and Milena make you feel at home. The beautiful individual units have stunning views and you will not regret booking your stays and dinner here. They are also adding a wellness area with indoor and outdoor pools surrounded by terraces. To add to your relaxing experiences, there will also be two solar heated hot tubs a massage room and small steam sauna cabin are being built as we speak. For the chill out moments there will be a sunken sitting pit where the guest can socialise in the evening hours and enjoy their favourite drink. For more information on Laguna Arenal Hotel go to their website or follow them on instagram or Facebook.