Have you ever visited a hotel and you just knew you needed to go back?
I would like a moment to write and share about my experience at Tabacón in Arenal Costa Rica located specifically in La Fortuna de San Carlos.
A few years back I had the pleasure of visiting the spa at Tabacón located at the base of the Arenal Volcano. Back then I was a single woman just being adventurous. Being there was enough of a thrill, but everything that came with it left me speechless. If I needed to pick a word to describe my experience that word would be MAGICAL.
The hot springs of healing
The Tabacón facility is made up of many hot springs with water temperatures ranging from 83℉ to 103℉ and environments that vary from raging waterfalls to tranquil forest experiences. The water found in natural hot springs contains a variety of different minerals, including calcium and sodium bicarbonate. They are known to reduce stress, promote sleep, relieve pain naturally and solve many skin problems.
The heart of a rainforest
It is no coincidence that they chose to put this spa in the heart of a rainforest. The rainforest has many healing properties as well, the scent alone is refreshing, moist and great for your skin. One very proper way of referring to rainforests is “The Earth’s Lungs” but in reverse because a key function of the trees in the rainforest is to take in large amounts of carbon monoxide (a poisonous gas mammals emit into the atmosphere) and through a process called photosynthesis it converts the gas into clean breathable air. It is a known fact that rainforest air is the single most terrestrial air that we could possibly breathe, it is no wonder this luxurious spa is located in the heart of one. The healing properties offered by the atmosphere alone are priceless.
My magical experience
Upon my arrival I was greeted with a mimosa and refreshments while I checked in. Classic indicator of top-notch service but too soon to tell. I stayed in the most basic of rooms known as The Orchid Room which had its own backyard, two full beds, very elegant furniture, and a huge bathroom with a shower. The cleanliness of the room was impeccable, the room service was prompt, and the staff that delivers room service and cleans the room was professional.
The staff at the reception area was also very professional in their presentation of the spa services. The list of services itself was complex and it was extremely hard to choose from them. I checked in on a Saturday morning and left on Sunday afternoon but in that short time I scheduled a deep tissue massage and a full body mud mask which were two separate services.
Detoxifying my mind and body
The first service was a signature service of theirs, referred to as Tabacón. It is a 90 minute full body deep tissue massage administered in the middle of a RAINFOREST. It was heaven on earth for me. Not only was the masseuse excellent, but the atmosphere was truly unique in all of its aspects and unmatched by any other I had ever experienced. For the record, I have been to many spas and I consider myself somewhat of a spa connoisseur. Throughout my massage I could hear the birds chirping and the unique sounds of the rainforest penetrating my soul and healing me in ways I didn’t even know were possible. It was the perfect escape from the city I was looking for. It was a place like no other I have ever been to.
The location of the massage was in a huge bungalow, equipped with two beds so that anyone with a partner could have their service performed together. The bungalow also had a tub and I remember thinking to myself I needed to go back with my future husband one day. The tub is there in case you choose any of their milk bathes as a service, but you can also use it in your time of privacy with your significant other if you choose to do. I was under the impression that I could not use it because I didn’t pay for the service that involved the tub but I was wrong.
The next day I experienced the Rainforest Caress, a 220 minute service with the Temazcal accent which is no longer offered today but I must tell you that this Temazcal feature made this experience very unique and even though it is not offered anymore it made a huge difference in my visit. The Rainforest Caress began in the same type of bungalow where the masseuse began by sitting me down in a chair and very humbly washing my feet. I was then escorted into the bed where I received a Swedish massage. It was followed by applying a mud to my whole body and letting the mud penetrate my pores, detoxifying me in ways I was not even aware of. Once the work of the mask was done I was handed a robe and escorted to a small pool made up of pure NATURE and all a part of their hot springs private and away from anyone who could possibly see me. The masseuse left me there and told me to rinse off in the spring. I was dumbfounded by the fact that I was going to be naked in a such a beautiful place, in the middle of nature rinsing the healing mud off of my body like I was Eve in The Garden.
I can hardly wait to go back to Tabacón and see what’s new. Since I was pressed for time during my visit, I was not able to try the Ave de Paraiso restaurant full of delicious delicacies, but I will definitely make sure I don’t miss that this time around. Maybe even the Private Gala Dinner they make possible for couples in love. I am planning on visiting this place in the next months again and I will provide an updated review on my experience so you all know what to expect these days in the Tabacón experience. I saw many treatments that I have not tried and now that I am married I can experience the MAGIC with my other half and tell you all about it from that perspective.
If you want to visually experience Tabacón, you can visit their website.
This article was written by Rosi Rosell, Spa and Hotel connoisseur.