I just got back from Riu Guanacasta. There is a lot I didn't know before going there, so wanted to write some useful things.
First of all there are two Riu hotels side by side. Riu Palace/ Riu Guanacasta. Riu palace is high end it seems than Riu Guanacasta. Atleast the hotel staff treat you like second class citizens if you are in Riu Guanacasta. RG doesn't provide shampoo, conditioner or moisturizer in their rooms. If asked about it, they will tell you it a privilege for only Riu Palace customers and you don't get one. Its hard for us to understand that because even a cheap motel In US provides them, and while claiming RG a 5 star hotel, I don't know what the problem is. If you approach and management and tell them that this is something they should have mentioned in their website, they will tell you that you can leave if you don't like the place and with no refund.
Secondly, if you reach there after 10 you basically have no food to eat. The so called "sports bar" with snack is all about frozen burgers and hot dogs, which is very disgusting. You would imagine a better food considering the 5 star tag. But sorry you are out of luck. All the restaurants in the premises are closed and you can't even go out because it build far away from everyone. So sleep hungry. I approached the ASSISTANT manager "MARIA" and asked her about the food situation and instead of getting my suggestions and attending to my concerns she asked me to leave if i have a problem and she can do and talk what ever she wants to. At the end of the conversation I left calling her an "idiot". Because I am on a vacation and I don't have time to teach hospitality and manners to idiots.
For people, who enjoys drinks, more than food, you get drinks through out the hotel. The drinks are pretty good, but I feel that they use some local brands of alcohol versus our smirin off or jack Daniels. If thats fine with you, its all fun! The mini bar in the room gets restocked every two days. It has couple of water bottles, fanta, and couple of cokes. It has four different bottles of liquor in a tapped manner on the top of the fridge.
Coming to the food situation, there are 3 restaurants and one buffet. The buffet is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The buffet for breakfast and lunch is more like Golden Correl standard. For dinner, it looked pretty good but we didn't have dinner there. There is one chinese and italian place which doesn't need reservation and there are first come first serve basis. They are open from 6-9. They are ok. There is one Steak house place and sea food one. They have pre fixed menu and I ate in the sea food one named "Tuscan" its good. I haven't had dinner in the steak house place but it has a ocean view. During the afternoons this place serves lunch buffet and it didn't appeal to me at all because of all the flies on the food.
The room are kept very clean. The beds are hard and moreover if you ask for a king bed they will combine two full beds and give you. Its pretty uncomfortable, so my and my hubby slept on one full and left the other one alone. The showers are bit rusted. The rooms are in the OK location. because some of them has a side view of ocean from the balcony. The towels are ok! Pool has some entertainment. The shows are pretty time pass. The Micheal Jackson one is good. The guy did a pretty awesome job.
Overall, out of all the vacations we took from past 4 years, This one is the most expensive and least quality. I have been to better hotels nice restaurants and nice location. The beach is more black sand beach, but its not dirty. I guess it gets the color from the mountains around it.
Weather, The rainy season started and it rained in the evening almost every day. But it was ok!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Opening winter 2009/10. Situated in northern Costa Rica, in Guanacaste. Located on Playa de Matapalo beach. Complimentary sun loungers on the beach. 6-storey main building. Surrounded by 35,000 m2 / 41,86 sq. yards of lush gardens. Closest village: Nuevo Colon. 13 km / 8.1 miles from various shops. 33 km / 20.5 miles from Liberia airport. Credit cards accepted: MasterCard, Amex, Visa ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Riu Guanacaste Costa Rica