Unplug and Recharge: Digital Detoxing at Lapa Rios Eco Lodge

A “digital detox” is defined as a period of time during which a person refrains from using electronic connecting devices and Lapa Rios Eco Lodge is the perfect place to try one. Nestled in a remote lowland rainforest, the Lapa Rios bungalows have no radio, telephone service, or T.V.s and Wifi is only accessible in a small designated area near the main lodge. With a little self-restraint, this makes it easy to ditch the devices and indulge in some quality personal time surrounded by the lush greenery of the Osa Peninsula.  LR325

With our increasing dependence on smartphones, laptops, and tablets to stay in touch with work and friends, it has become easy to lose touch with ourselves. The average American spends 11 hours looking at a screen every day, which has its repercussions on physical and mental health.The American College of Cardiology even found that too much screen time is linked to higher blood pressure and BMI. Taking the time to disconnect our devices and reconnect with real life can be difficult but the benefits of doing a digital detox are well worth it.

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Along with giving you extra time to revel in Lapa Rios’s stunning surroundings, taking a break from your devices provides a wealth of benefits such as better sleep, reduced stress, and increased creativity. It also provides you with the opportunity to enjoy quality social time be it with your friends, family, sweetheart, or the other adventurers staying at the eco lodge. And there is no shortage of things to do sans smartphone at Lapa Rios. Swap out the blue and white Twitter bird for 319 far more interesting species on an Early Bird Tour or explore the wealth of beautiful beaches (no filter needed). Spend less time liking Facebook posts, more time loving every minute of your Costa Rican get away and return home feeling revitalized.

Unique Lodges of the World reaches the 1 year mark.

The Unique Lodges of the World initiative by National Geographic reached the 1 year mark last week and Lapa Rios is very proud of this as one of its original founders.

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The collection was launched January 2015, and since then National Geographic Unique Lodges of the World has nearly doubled the number of properties in its impressive collection, increasing its geographic breadth to the Canadian High Arctic, Brazil’s Atlantic Forest, the Seychelles, the mountains of northern Greece and beyond. The collection began with 24 charter members ( Lapa Rios being one of them) and accepted 14 in June and seven over the past few months, bringing it to 45 lodges — and counting. These extraordinary properties were selected for the outstanding guest service and experiences they offer, and for their leadership in sustainable tourism and commitment to protecting cultural and natural heritage. They must undergo a rigorous vetting process and a site audit to become part of the collection.

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Hans Pfister, general manager and president of the Cayuga Collection is also part of the board and a beacon to follow in the quest for sustainable tourism all around the world.

The Year of International Sustainable Tourism

We’ve been developing the “Year of International Sustainable Tourism for Development” for almost 20 years!

For nearly two decades, sustainability has been a core value at Lapa Rios Eco Lodge with an unwavering commitment to conserve this incredible region and create a sustainable property. We are thrilled to announce that the rest of the world is joining in our campaign. The year 2017 has been declared the “Year of International Sustainable Tourism for Development” by the United Nations, marking a milestone towards the international communities new Agenda 2030 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To celebrate this global milestone, we have decided to reflect back on some of our sustainable achievements to date.

Building for the Future

In 2003 Lapa Rios became the first hotel in Costa Rica to receive five-leaf status from the Costa Rica Tourism Board’s (ICT) Certification for Sustainable Tourism, an organization that evaluates a property’s sustainability level and awards one to five leaves. While we are very proud of our award-winning resort, one of the most gratifying parts of our efforts has been the opportunity to share this unique property with our guests. Lapa Rios has successfully protected 1,000 acres of mostly primary rainforest from logging and uncontrolled development making it a sanctuary for a variety of plants and animals. From monkeys to jaguars, from poison dart frogs to toucans, the private reserve is full of wildlife for guests to enjoy. With our guided tours guests can hike up through virgin rainforest to pristine waterfalls, splash back along the Carbonera River, share the cool early morning air with the 319 bird species that inhabit the reserve or surf and kayak among a rainbow of tropical fish. By choosing to hike and learn about the area with a knowledgeable local guide, guests help support the community economy and play a vital role in helping to preserve a rainforest while enjoying all the area has to offer.

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Visitors may also contribute to the sustainable development in the Lapa Rios reforestation program by transplanting a primary seedling to an area of secondary growth. Or you can visit our local school to take a special tour with the children and visit the newest library in the Osa Peninsula region. Thanks to the joint effort between Lapa Rios and Earth Equilibrium, a new program called “Books To Fly” has put new libraries in three schools around Puerto Jimenez. Our five-year plan includes adding 13 more libraries to the region’s schools to support education in the area.
Lapa Rios Ecolodge has created more than 30 initiatives specific to sustainability in addition to an environmental strategy plan. Check out some of these great initiatives here!

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The best part is, we aren’t finished yet! Sustainability projects for the near future include signing the Ecological Land Easement created by Cederena and The Nature Conservancy in 2002, expanding the nature reserve by acquiring more land, creating an on-going monitoring program, which measures the impact of visitor and infrastructure operation on the resources and increase the reach of the Carbonera School Foundation to other schools on the Osa improving infrastructure and learning conditions.
For a comprehensive list of sustainability efforts and the environmental strategy plan at Lapa Rios Ecolodge visit http://www.laparios.com/lapgoal/

Green Season Promotion at Lapa Rios

Man has it been a great year! and now onwards an upwards with 2016!

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We have met awesome people during the holiday season but we have not stopped thinking about our friends all around the world that have not had the chance to come to Lapa Rios yet.

This is why we have created a promotion during the most colorful season in Costa Rica!

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If you book a 3 day vacation between April 20th and June 19th, 2016 you get the 4th night on us!

Come and enjoy the wonders of the rainforest at it’s most luscious and greenest state.

For reservations click here.

Pura Vida!

 

The Positive Impact of Tourism

Sustainability goes beyond the environmental impact a property can have. The positive role tourism can take in any country can touch people’s lives and improve them in a very direct way.

A great example is Danny Jimenez of Lapa Rios Eco Lodge on the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica.   He started to work with us on March 15th, 1996 when he was 18 years old.   He started out in maintenance and then moved on to housekeeping. After passing through the Lapa Rios and Cayuga Collection training and ” grooming” process he is today one of our “˜superstar”™ department heads and team leaders in housekeeping. But his history with Lapa Rios goes back even further.

When John and Karen Lewis started Lapa Rios Eco Lodge in the early 1990″™s and helped build the Carbonera School he was one of the first students.   His access to primary education allowed him to develop himself as a professional, by later obtaining a driver’s license, using computers and learning about management and leadership skills. Right now, his next challenge is to learn English and he is seeing a private tutor twice a week.

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Danny is married and has two children. He was able to buy a house in Puerto Jimenez and provide financial stability to his family. When we asked Danny about the secret of staying for so long at our eco lodge, he said it has to do with the capacity to deal with change.   He has seen his hometown of Puerto Jimenez change over the years and also experienced changes at Lapa Rios.   For many locals, change is a very difficult thing to deal with, but Danny and two of our other long term employees Edwin Villareal and Jose Parajeles agreed with him.

We hope that Danny never stops dreaming and continues his development as hospitality professional. We will continue to support his dreams and hope that he is an inspiration for many others.

The beauty of the Rainforest.

Set within a 1000-acre private nature reserve in Central America’s last remaining lowland tropical rain forest in Costa Rica’s wild Osa Peninsula, Lapa Rios is paradise for lovers of wildlife, birding, nature and beaches. Our 17 private bungalows line three ridges overlooking the pristine point where the Golfo Dulce meets the Pacific Ocean.

Much more than a luxurious eco lodge, Lapa Rios is an ecotourism project, a pioneer in sustainable tourism and a place that has cultural and environmental sustainability as its cornerstone.

Take a look around the rain forest that surrounds Lapa Rios with our expert guide, Edwin. The rain forest is our home and we love it.

 

 

 

What is Lapa Rios all about.

With the Green Season coming to an end we are preparing for the big increase of visitors over the next few months. Many times, while trying to decide where to go for their fall or winter holidays, guests ask us, what is an Eco lodge all about? Will I be able to  handle it? How different is this from camping? so, today, we will try to answer these questions.

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Lapa Rios Eco Lodge is designed to let you completely disconnect from your every day life and learn from mother nature. Lapa,  is one of only few eco lodges in the world to be located in the rainforest with easy access to secluded beaches facing the Pacific Ocean, allowing for a great variety of land and water-based tours and activities.

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Our 17 luxurious bungalows are nestled along a ridge in our 1000-acre private rainforest Reserve. The bungalows are open-air with screens that allow you to experience the sounds, sights and smells of the rainforest and the ocean. All bungalows have ceiling fans (no air-conditioning) and offer stunning views of the Pacific Ocean or Golfo Dulce from your bed or spacious private decks. What do we not have? Our resort does not have internet, television or air conditioning in our luxury bungalows, and neither does we use pesticides as we like to keep our little friends around. They are the main reason why the larger animals everyone wants to see visit us.

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We do all these not only with sustainability in mind, but also thinking about our guests and their experience with us. Lapa Rios is as close to nature as you can get while still sleeping in a comfortable bed.

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Lapa Rios is set up so you can take a tour or activity during the day and really unwind in the evenings reading your favorite book, sitting at the dinner table, hanging out with your friends at the bar. Lapa Rios is about community and close connections, to nature and each other.

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Birding Season is back!

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Lapa Rios Eco Lodge is undoubtedly one of Central America’s top birding destinations. Nestled in more than a 1,000 acres of primary and old re-growth rain forest, Lapa Rios has recorded more than 325 bird species from varied ecosystems ranging from our Golfo Dulce-Pacific beaches up to the 350 mts. (1,150 ft.) primary forest-covered Osa Peinsula hilltops, and along river crossings and nearby grassy fields.

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Adding to this is the fact that the largest diversity of birds is found during the migration months of September and October!. Right now is the best time to come to Lapa Rios and get in one of our famous bird watching tours with the most knowledgeable local guides.

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Book today and take advantage of our reserve three nights stay four nights special promotion!

Looking forward to your visit,

The team at Lapa Rios.

Wildlife at Lapa Rios

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Guests at Lapa Rios get to experience Costa Rica’s biodiversity in all of its splendor.

While you visit the Osa Peninsula —one of the most beautiful and wild parts of this country and home to 2.5% of the world’s biodiversity-  you’ll find four species of monkey: Squirrel, spider, white-face capuccin and howler monkey. The  Osa Peninsula is also one of Central America’s best locations for birders and nearby Corcovado National Park is home to many of the country’s endangered animals such as pumas, three toed sloths, jaguars, scarlet macaws, tapirs and the great harpy eagle.

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Furthermore, Costa Rica;s biodiversity extends to the Oceans and the waters around Lapa Rios are home to dolphins and wales depending on the time of the year.

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Our on-property tours are included in your stay and you won’t want to miss them. We employ four full-time experienced naturalist guides to make sure you get the most out of your experience. We strive to touch every guest with the importance of conserving biodiversity in Costa Rica and the world.

All guided tours in the Lapa Rios Reserve help support the ongoing maintenance and land preservation of the rich Osa Peninsula.

Are there bugs at Lapa Rios?

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One of the most frequently asked questions we get at Lapa Rios is: Will there be bugs at night? And the answer is yes. At Lapa Rios we do our best to keep our guests comfortable and at the same time we do everything we can to preserve the natural environment and bring the rainforest and its inhabitants as close to our guests as possible while respecting their need for safety and nature’s space. Both are an essential part of your visit at Lapa Rios so we do not use insecticides or herbicides as it is the little critters the ones that attract the larger animals that everyone wants to see!

At our bungalows we  use nursery shade cloth for walls rather than regular screens. This type of screen allows for soothing ocean breezes to ventilate and cool your room in the evening, though it may also bring with it some small insects and creatures (eg geckos—nothing large or dangerous). We recommend that guests turnoff all interior room lights when going to dinner to save energy and attract less critters in their rooms at night.

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Sharing your holiday with our ever-present wildlife population is a special part of your stay at Lapa Rios. While you will see many new forms of life there is little risk with common sense. Along with the Lapa Rios staff, the whole cast of rainforest characters is here to welcome you and make this visit memorable!