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Our Story – How Monteverde Used To Be 65 Years Ago!

Once a farm that produced milk for the Monteverde Cheese Factory, El Bosque was one of the first lodges established in Monteverde.

lodge

The story of Monteverde begins in the 1950s when a group of Quaker families from the United States left their country in search of peace and tranquility, refusing to join the US Army as the Korean War waged. They travelled many places throughout Central America until they found Monteverde, a safe haven far from the fears of enlistment or imprisonment. And so, they settled for a simple, peaceful life surrounded by nature.

Soon later, in 1953, the Quakers established the first business in the area: The Monteverde Cheese Factory, which employed most of the adult population back then. Monteverde locals were either employees of the factory, or farmers who produced supplies for it. Don Marcos and Doña Irma (founders of El Bosque Lodge) were among these farmers, and little did they know, that the land where they used to have cattle, would 20 years later become one of the first lodges for eco-tourism.

In the early 1970s, the Quakers joined forces with resident scientists to make the case for the first private nature preserve in Costa Rica. With approximately 330 hectares, they successfully established the Monteverde Cloud Forest Biological Preserve.

In the years that followed, tourism began to grow in Monteverde from small numbers of scientists to thousands of tourists who were initially camping in the lands of locals until the first lodges were established. El Bosque was one of those first establishments, the bus from San Jose (pretty much the only way for tourists to get here back then…) used to stop right in front of the current entrance which naturally drove many tourists to ask Don Marcos and Doña Irma to let them either sleep in one of the rooms of their house or to let them camp in their private forest.

In the 1990s, Don Marcos and Doña Irma made a decision to start building the lodge which began with only a few rooms, slowly growing to the 25 rooms that it has today, and 25 years later, they decided that it was time to retire and pass on the business to a new generation.

Don Marcos and Doña Irma then left the property and handed over the business to Daniel, who took ownership in August 2016, with no experience in tourism but a strong business management skillset and a wealth of customer service experience, from a corporate world to a nature paradise.

Nowadays, even though, Monteverde has changed a lot and many other lodges have been established since eco-tourism was first introduced, El Bosque is one of very few that keeps its essence: a simple lodge, in a beautiful setting, with gardens, a private forest set aside for conservation, many trails to get lost on, and now a birdwatching tour and a night walk onsite available to its clients and open to the public for those who are not staying at the lodge.

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