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Hotel, Brewery & Watersports Center On Lake Arenal For Sale

Tilaran, Guanacaste, Costa Rica
Asking Price:
$2,000,000 (USD) Furniture / Fixtures included
Sales Revenue:
$100K - $250K (USD)
Cash Flow:
$50K - $100K (USD)

Thank you for your interest in Costa Rican destination resorts. All real estate investors are aware of the fact that COVID-19 has forced the closure of almost 25% of the hotels and 40% of the restaurants and fire-sale pricing of previously profitable properties is available. However, this operating destination resort, is priced at less than 2/3 of replacement value and more importantly has a plan to create and dominate new international market segment, so a fire-sale it’s not!

For Sale Option 1: 100% of the infrastructure and turn-key operating business of the hotel at a discount for $2,000,000; this price is based on the 2.6 million Banco de Costa Rica (BCR) appraisal of land and buildings only.
Option 2: Buy the controlling 51%, for 1.5 million, which includes the un-appraised but real value of the operating business, all of its furnishings/equipment, and the brewery equipment (which, alone, is a $300,000 value)!

The Business
On-site, a 3.5-barrel regional brewery, Lake Arenal Brewery (LAB), pays $1,000 per month for the rental of 100m2 space and serves as the main attraction for the bar/restaurant and road advertising. LAB produces eight types of keg beer with a majority of production going to off-premises sales Jaco, Nosara, and Central Valley, among others. Off-premises sales drive significant sales traffic to the bar/restaurant and quite unusual for a hotel to be known for great and affordably priced food and craft beer here in Costa Rica.

The bar/restaurant is rented to a third party and pays all of its own related expenses including: electricity, employees, and all purchases generating sales and taxes generated from sales. In lieu of a traditional fixed monthly rental fee, it's a commission on sales: with commissions is paid every 15 days of 25% of bar sales and 15% of restaurant sales, both of gross income, based on POS data.

The hotel 35780 square feet of structures has an economic break-even occupancy rate of 20%. The 21 rooms all have solar hot water and solar photovoltaic panels which keep operational costs extremely low. There is a combination of nice 4-bed and 2-bed rooms, some with fireplaces, seven of which can be equipped as a kitchenette.

During COVID-19
We, like all hotel/bar/restaurants, was closed in early March 2020. However, we were the very first hotel/bar/restaurant in Costa Rica to restart live DJ music events, while in compliance with COVID-19 CR Ministry of Health guidelines. Our live shows helped restart that industry, along with some of the biggest reggae and techno DJs of Costa Rica. Recently we have added singing and live band performances, so we are filling the hotel every weekend. Although weekday room rentals continue to reflect the lack of international tourists in Costa Rica, our bar/restaurant sales are strong with promotions of the regular weekly events of Taco Tuesdays, Sushi & Wine Thursdays (please see videos), and our Saturday nights, all with live music; we recently added Sunday Pool Afternoons with music, as well. The fact of the matter is, until we can fill the rooms during the week, the hotel will remain in “break-even” mode.

The Brewery side has been better than the accommodations side, since we are selling more beer to third-party bars and we added sales of our 8 traditional ales in 1L (32oz) recycled bottles, with our own bottling and labeling process on-site. These efforts have resulted in a doubling of off-premises COVID-19 sales, currently at 35% of production capacity and growing.

Preparing for Post COVID-19
Please stay with me here. In 1990, when I came to Costa Rica the first time, I was one of hundreds of thousands of avid North American windsurfers, which is why we built and opened the hotel in 1991, and rode the boom of destination resort windsurfing vacations, marketing weekly packages for rooms and equipment rentals. For a decade the annual investment of $20,000 in windsurfing equipment would result in $110,000 in annual revenue with a low operational cost of less than $20,000. Hotel occupancy was high, but unfortunately, the sport started declining in 2000 (Y2K) for various reasons (expensive, hard to learn, etc.) and then became almost non-existent. Sadly, we had to close our lake-side watersports facility in 2007.

The Post COVID-19 Attraction
Anyone familiar with a Poma lift or T-bar lift at a ski area recognizes the importance of getting the skier uphill - this is exactly what people have been willing to pay for since 1881 and it is none other than the Poma lift ( which resulted in the creation of a billion-dollar industry.

If one thinks of upwind like uphill, one can immediately understand the value of safely and reliably getting stand up paddle boarders, kayakers, foil boarders, kite boarders and their equipment upwind. Do this again and again without human effort and you have a ride that you can sell! Downwind or gravity powered human travel combined with mechanical power to return to the starting point is a winning combination - simply look at the downhill skiing industry. That combination of fun and NO WORK – having the wind literally at your back - makes a huge spectrum of water sports much easier. Monitoring the safety and enjoyment of clients is also easy, because it’s inevitable that all riders will return to where they started and they will remain within a one-mile area. The strength and consistency of the wind direction in Lake Arenal is unique in the world and opens up almost 300 continuous days of operating potential - think about that operational time frame: ski areas make millions in only 100 to 160 days of operation per year. Think of the marketing potential of the phrase: “learn to surf in fresh water, no paddling required!”. International tourists, and more importantly, local Costa Ricans, will pay a relatively small fee to have fun without much effort. Do the math…. 40 people paying the ride and equipment rental fee of $55 each per day = $2,200 x 250 days = $550,000 annually and that is just 20% of capacity.

The Watersports Tow Ride Technology Exists
The idea is to construct a complete system to board people onto individual rafts, with their equipment, towing them on a personal sized raft ride upwind to the drop-off point, so they can then enjoy practicing their chosen water sport activity, downwind back to the start. The required components currently exist within diverse industries; all that is needed is to configure them into the world’s first underwater rope tow. 1) The rotational power of a DC electric motor, which is used under water in waste water treatment facilities, will reliably power the running length movement of a 3.2 km long cable traveling in a continuous triangular route, one mile upwind at a safe walking speed pace and depth of 4m below the water’s surface; 2) Floating spar foundations, a mature technology currently used to float navigational buoys and support large off-shore wind turbines in deep water, can provide the rotating change-of-direction cable anchor points for the floating platform; 3) The large and sturdy floating platform will hold the DC motor and will accommodate 10 + people and all of the rental equipment; and 4) The floating seats or raft which people will ride on the lake’s surface are attached by a 6m rope to the underwater cable, which will move them upwind at a brisk walking speed and will return to the downwind starting point. All of this equipment is designed to withstand not only the annual 13m rise and fall of the lake level, but also the extreme wind that can sometimes generate up to 3m waves. This attraction can be achieved with your help!

Contact me with any questions or requests for more details about equipment/legal aspects/permits, etc. - I have it all.

For more information, please contact us by using the form below.

Property Information

Real Estate:

Real Property Included

Living Accommodation:

Obviously any new owner or majority partner could occupy one of the large apartments for any amount of time, so yep living accommodations are available.


8k from Tilaran, the cleanest town in Central America, with all paved roads and overlooking Lake Arenal.
Land Area
There are two duly inscribed lots totaling 44,435m2 BCR (10.98 acres) at $10m2 ($1.00 square foot) and 3324m2 (35780 square feet) $676m2 ($63 square foot) of construction, all priced by the BCR appraisal (please see area map photo and red bordered lots). It is important to note that the hotel owns all public road frontage of its access road.

Neighboring Land
Adjoining neighbors are two dairy farms, a large and famous skateboard park, a climbing wall, and a few high-end homes. In addition, I own the Be Green home development and community which includes 22 lots for sale, 4 of which currently have existing houses.

Premises Details:

Gravity feed spring water both Gov supplied and on-site private drinking water sources. Additional infrastructure to be noted: a large swimming pool, a large Jacuzzi, a tennis court, and a large laundry area. There is excellent paved access from highway 142 and the hotel is just 1.5 hours from the international airport in Liberia and the three top destinations in the area: Montverde, La Fortuna and Rio Celeste. The hotel has very developed gardens, green zones and spectacular lake and volcano views, in addition to two sources of high-speed internet, excellent AyA (govt.) administrated water, and extremely dependable ICE electrical service. We also have dairy, pork, and fruit and vegetable production which are revenue generating and tourist attractions! Since building and opening the hotel in 1992, I have pursued a "green" or sustainable approach, while fostering great local relationships with the community, individuals, and all other businesses and government agencies like the health department and local Municipality of Tiláran. The building is color ochre plastered rather than painted, which is much cheaper to periodically re-do; the solar PV almost negates the hotel and brewery bill, producing solar hot water for rooms and the Jacuzzi, and a bio-digester produces methane gas that cuts down on the LP gas cooking bill.

Size in square feet:
44,435m2 (10.98 acres) and 3324m2 (35780 square feet) of construction,
Planning Consent:

All applicable permits up and functioning for the hotel and Brewery, we have been open for business every hour the CR gov. has permitted us to be, post lock-down of Covid19

Business Operation

Expansion Potential:

Yes: especially on the lake shore and within it's large property area. Plenty of room for additional projects like bungalows or green houses for food production and an increase of our farm to table dining. In reality the property has the area for any myriad of destination resort endeavors.

Competition / Market:

Hotel Puerto San Luis located 8k away, or La fortuna hotels 1 hour distance around the lake.

Reasons for selling:

My motive for sale of the hotel is to finance the rebirth of a public marina/watersports center on the lake, and to spend more time on other projects, such as my adjacent Be Green home development, both of which will greatly benefit the hotel as a destination. The time is right to add an attraction so new and unique that it will garner worldwide attention, and be especially marketable in the USA, because this time, it will appeal to multiple water sport enthusiasts.

Trading hours:

6:30 to 2:00am or 10:00 regular nights

The Business On-site, a 3.5-barrel regional brewery, Lake Arenal Brewery (LAB), pays $1,000 per month for the rental of 100m2 space and serves as the main attraction for the bar/restaurant and road advertising. LAB produces eight types of keg beer with a majority of production going to off-premises sales in Jaco, Nosara, and Central Valley, among other destinations. These off-premises sales drive significant sales traffic to the bar/restaurant and hotel! It’s quite unusual for a hotel to be known for great and affordably priced food and craft beer here in Costa Rica. The bar/restaurant is rented to a third party and pays all of its own related expenses including: electricity, employees, and all purchases generating sales and taxes generated from sales. In lieu of a traditional fixed monthly rental fee is a commission on sales: the commission is paid every 15 days and is 25% (the bar sales) and 15% (the restaurant sales) of total income, based on POS data.
Years established:

Other Information

Support & training:

up to 4 months on site and phone consultation 12 months

Owner financing:
Owner financing is available. Please contact the seller for more information.
Financing available:

up to 75%

Furniture / Fixtures value:
$80,000 (USD) - included in the asking price
Inventory / Stock value:
$20,000 (USD)
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