The Magazine for spa and wellness in Mexico, the Caribbean and Latin America​

Spa Review: Tabacon Thermal Resort & Spa, Costa Rica

Tabacón Thermal Resort & Spa is situated near the base of the Arenal volcano just outside the town of La Fortuna in the northern region of Costa Rica. It sits amidst 364 hectares of rainforest and hot springs within Parque Nacional Volcán Arenal. On the journey to Tabacón, enjoy spectacular scenic views of Lake Arenal and lush, tropical rainforest foliage along the climbing, winding roads that lead to this natural wonder.

In 1991, Costa Rican architect Jaime Mikowski came across the Tabacón River and its thermal springs. Mikowski purchased, renovated and reopened the property with the fresh vision of a natural and sustainable spa and wellness escape. Tabacón is now Costa Rica’s leading thermal springs experience, ideal for wellness and adventure travelers who want to authentically experience this spectacular destination.

Sweeping rainforest views are enjoyed from the resort’s 103 eco-friendly guest rooms and suites. These feature handcrafted, locally made furniture and can accommodate both couples and families.

The Springs
The Tabacón River flows out from underground at the base of the Arenal volcano and is naturally heated by the volcano’s magma. The high temperature of the thermal springs causes solid minerals such as silica, calcium and lithium to dissolve in the water. These minerals can be absorbed through the skin and are linked to health improvements such as stress relief and relaxation, improved circulation, joint mobility and increased energy levels.

Tabacón Thermal Resort & Spa offers the largest and only 100% natural network of thermal mineral springs in Costa Rica. The pools are dotted around a maze of pathways lined with lush green foliage and bright tropical flowers. Relax to the sounds of rushing water, birdcalls and everyday jungle wildlife.

At the top of the network of springs, closest to the volcano, sits the Shangri-La Gardens. This secluded adults-only oasis of calm, open only to hotel guests, boasts six natural pools from 38-41 degrees Celsius. A bar serving food and drinks, and cocoon shaped cabanas provide the perfect setting for a day of relaxation at the springs.

The Spa
The Spa at Tabacón features 11 open-air rainforest bungalows where a variety of treatments and therapies are performed; two of these are designed for couples. Blending natural rainforest elements and indigenous products from the area, the spa is an ideal place to connect with nature while relaxing and restoring. Music is not required here at the Spa at Tabacón; the soothing sounds of water and jungle wildlife create the perfect auditory experience to compliment your spa journey.

I recommend the Honey Temptation treatment. This experience begins and ends with an invigorating inhalation of Wild Orange essential oil. The massage is performed with honey to hydrate and soften the skin, and this is rinsed off in a hot thermal spring water shower at the end of the service.

A hot pool fed with natural thermal spring water creates the centerpiece of the relaxation area, open to both males and females, where fresh juices are served and the scent of jasmine fills the air.

The sustainability plan at the eco-friendly Carbon-Neutral resort includes environmental species tagging, use of organic and biodegradable products, integral waste management, reforestation, water and electricity conservation, use of energy-saving technology and plant-a-tree programs. Tabacón has been credited with the highest category of 5 leaves in the Certification for Sustainable Tourism, granted by Costa Rican Board of Tourism.

Sara Jones


Sara Jones
Author: Sara Jones

Subscribe to receive the
latest news and information from

Spa & Wellness MexiCaribe