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“Wonderful Oasis” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Xandari Resort & Spa

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Xandari Resort & Spa
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   1 km northwest of El Diamante Bar | Tacacori, Alajuela 4050, Costa Rica   |  
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Hotel amenities
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Pay 2 nights, 3rd free
Ranked #1 of 30 Hotels in Alajuela
Cartago, Costa Rica
Senior Contributor
33 reviews 33 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Wonderful Oasis”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012

The Xandari Resort and Spa is so beautiful. Each room is really a suite, colorful, comfortable, beautiful views of San Jose from private balcony. The Spa is fantastic, and private, comfortable, great spa treatements.
At Xandari there are five waterfalls to walk to, Orchid greenhouse, a little farm where they grow vegetables that are used in the restaruant, beautiful, beautiful gardens, swimming pools, I can go on and on. Not to mention the restaurant.
I will be returning, again, and again, perfect place to get relaxed and centered.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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564 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (109)
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English first
Costa Rica
Top Contributor
57 reviews 57 reviews
24 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 8, 2012

We live in Costa Rica and fly in and out of SJO a lot. We have always heard good things about the Xandari, but have never had a chance to stay here until recently (for once we were traveling without our two young children). This place is amazing!

Only 20 minutes from the airport, but you feel like you're hundreds of miles away from anything (so much so that it can be very hard to find the first time!) The chains across from the airport are adequate if you arrive late and don't have much time in SJ, but if you arrive early enough or leave late enough, this is where you should stay. Can't think of a nicer spot to start/end my Costa Rican vacation and much more of a Costa Rican experience than staying in a North American chain hotel across the freeway from the airport.

The property is massive, and you feel like you are the only guests...until you go to the restaurant and you wonder where all these other folks are the rest of the time. =) The sunset pool and view is just as pretty as the photo in real life, if not prettier (and we were the only folks out there on a beautiful sunny day). And the twinkling lights of the city at night, unreal.

The staff was all very friendly and accommodating, you can tell they enjoy working there. Since the owners are an architect and an artist, the villas are as spectacular. And no two are alike. Lucy was so helpful and sweet during the reservation process, as well as Konrad at the spa who set up a sunset massage + jacuzzi for our anniversary. They were both very prompt answering my questions and very organized, it was very appreciated and made for a wonderful day for us.

We enjoyed our stay so much we immediately booked my parents for the night before they were leaving SJ and they loved it as much as we did. We will definitely be back - highly recommend this hotel!

Room Tip: We loved our Ultra Villa Plus!
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, District of Columbia, United States
Top Contributor
55 reviews 55 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2012

Great place to stay! We stayed here during the rainy season (sept 2012) but it rained for about an hour or 2 each day about the same time 1-3pm.

The grounds of the resort are beautiful! Tons of plants and birds to see. The paths are wide and well lite for walking. You are surrounded by beauty! We did not go into the pools as the days were not hot enough for us to warrant use of the pools. They are large and very well maintained. We would've made use of the jacuzzi during the day as it seemed warmer naturally than the pool but we had our 4 month. The trails at the resort are well maintained and well lite, We walked it with our 4 month old in tow. We also picked fruit off the trees and ate it while walking( oranges and starfruit). The villas aren't insulated so if you get chilly easily like I do, bring warm clothes for bedtime and slippers to wear around the villa as the floors are tiled. I would also suggest bringing a small portable grill ( george formman or the likes) and going to the supermarket as it can get costly eating out and the taxi's back and forth.

As far as taxi's I would also recommend taking the metered taxi's with the meter being at the top of the front window so it can be seen throughout your trip. The "hired" cars through the resort are at least double the cost for transportation. Use at your discretion.

The resort restaurant ( the only place to eat at the resort) was great. The fruit and veggie select varied daily. The costs are typical of an average restaurant dinner meals are between $10-20 each. Lunch $5-10. Breakfast is AMAZING! FREE! YUMMY! Yogurt, granola, fresh muffins, fresh fruit, coffee, tea, bagels, veggies, cheese, ham and chicken lunch meat slices. A great variety all for free! We loaded up on the yummy free breakfast daily. They have other things for sale pancakes, bacon, eggs at a reasonable cost. Again average cost of a meal in the US. The staff is amazing! We stayed 6 days and each day the staff welcomed us with warm smiles.

The only reason why I did not give the resort 5 stars is because of the ants. Yes, we were warned about the ants from the staff and tried (very hard) to keep food away and clean the floors and tables of food and drinks to not welcome the ants but they still come. They are the typical little black ants that come during the summer (sugar ants) but they are annoying. At night I made my husband check the sheets to make sure they were not in the bed. I still found it difficult to sleep just knowing that they still climb about and get into everything!

no tv or internet in the rooms but they offer a variety of books for reading and they offer playing cards also. The resort does have a tv and a computer with internet access in the main lobby.

Room Tip: villa 4 has a direct path from the reception.
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2012

We stayed here on our last couple of nights because it was a short drive to the airport for our departure. Xandari is a coffee plantation, so we took the walking tour of the plantation. The room was incredible and the view was awesome. Our room was so private and we felt like we were the only ones on the property. The bathroom overlooked a wonderful garden, which the whole room was open in glass and surrounded by gardens on the outside. You enter a locked gate to your patio, which had about a 12 foot wall surrounding your courtyard for privacy. We also enjoyed a wonderful couples massage and afterward we enjoyed a spa that overlooked the city...breathtaking. I would love to go back someday for a longer stay....a must stay for anyone.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Roxbury, CT
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
44 hotel reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
147 helpful votes 147 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2012

The Xandari is an excellent choice under any circumstances but if you want a hotel that is close to the airport (SJO) look no further. My Wife and I celebrated her birthday in Costa Rica in early September 2012. We had a late arriving flight and early departing flight so after careful consideration we selected Xandari for our first and last nights in Costa Rica and we were not disappointed. Our rooms were immaculate, clean and the airflow was great. Xandari sits high up on the mountain side overlooking Alajuela. The views, night or day, are spectacular. The Resort grounds are amazing (walking paths and trails are well done) and the villas (we stayed in the Ultra rooms 4 and 5) are ultra modern sheik, private and very comfortable. The majority of artwork has been done by the owner as well as the design and layout of the Resort. The breakfast was excellent and the dinner on our last night was great. The staff and security were very attentive and often times anticipated our needs. Are flight arriving was delayed by 2 hours and upon arrival we had a fresh fruit plate waiting for us in our room and because we had an early flight we were given a boxed breakfast the night before our flight. It is the little details such as the latter that separate a good Resort from a great Resort. You will not be disappointed with your stay at Xandari. Due to our travel schedule we did not partake in the Fitness Center or Spa.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miami Beach
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 15, 2012

After reading about barking dogs (yep) and stale tortilla chips (!), I had to jump onto TripAdvisor to offer my thoughts on Xandari. I will make them brief but succinct. Xandari is the BEST place I have ever stayed ... when seeking the type of vacation that brought me to Costa Rica. If you're expecting a Ritz-Carlton pampering with super-posh bath products and deluxe accommodations, go to Hawaii or the Westin St. John. That's not why you are here.
The rooms are very unique and artsy. Memory foam mattress are great. Blinds that do not block out the 5am sunrise are somewhat of a drag. No AC? No worries. It's pretty nice at night. The noise? That was an issue on my first two of four nights with random barking dogs from outside the property. Costa Rica has many random roaming dogs ... not strays, I was told. The shower has no curtain but no worries ... it's private. The room we had was close enough to the main building where we got somewhat spotty but adequate WiFi; there is a hard-wired computer in the main building that is superfast and a media room with Sky satellite TV. No TV in the guest rooms ... but did you really come here so you could see Watchmen in Spanish from your bed when you could enjoy wine and fine food at very affordable prices from the Xandari restaurant with a priceless view of monkeys in trees, birds eating papaya from a tableside feeder and the entire Central Valley off in the distance?
The room we had (18) is one of two in a split villa. The wall is a bit thin but a buddy had the adjoining room. If we had loud neighbors that would have been an issue. The patio overlooks the Central Valley and there are plenty of birds and animals at sunrise to hear!
Our room was also across from a nice pool and jacuzzi -- a bonus. I didn't get to the affinity pool near the more private and more distant villas, and did not use the spa but it looks very nice. Why? Because there are about 4km of serious hiking trails on the property that include waterfalls, a garden where I planted a tree in honor of my girlfriend and I, a working chicken coop, a citrus orchard and an art studio.
The staff at the restaurant is not "stiff." They are trained to wine and dine Americans. Once I started speaking to them in colloquial Spanish they loosened up and we got great service.
Do I have "complaints"? Not really. There was a miscommunication regarding our arrival at the airport because of a flight delay out of our control and we had to take our chances with a local livery driver who ripped us off, we later learned. We had prepaid to Xandari our airport ride and I had to haggle a little bit to apply the prepaid fee to an excursion cost.
On one night we used the Xandari driver to take us three into Alajuela, a somewhat sleepy but very clean and friendly town five minutes down the hill from Xandari, for dinner. He charged us $20 USD. The cab ride back from the one bar we could locate (Bulevar) was a whopping $8 USD. The taxis are totally fine and I took one to the airport for $11.50.
Lastly, the excursion packages that Xandari is able to arrange through preffered providers were excellent and we were treated royally. We recommend Colinas del Poas ziplining, and Rios Tropicales for Pacuare River whitewater rafting (spend the $$ on a private van and guide -- they'll buy you breakfast, lunch and prepare a nice surprise at the end of the 18 mile trek and you need not deal with hotel drops in San Jose). Hike at Poas Volcano, and be sure to go to La Paz Waterfall Gardens for in-your-face birds, big cats, monkeys and more waterfall-filled hiking. All can be done from Xandari, making my busy four-day stay truly exceptional.
I will return. I do not care that I had to bring my own Aveda bath products taken from a recent stay at a hotel in the US as the homemade oatmeal soap and crummy shampoo/conditioner they offer is worse than a Ramada Inn. That's not why I was there.
Just get rid of the barking dogs, neighbors of Xandari. That's my only complaint.
Otherwise I can't wait to return to see my tree and enjoy more eco-minded experiences.

Room Tip: If you see privacy ask for a high-numbered villa but prepared for a long and somewhat dark nighttime...
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2012

My husband and I came here 3 years ago our favorite was the nachos they served and they had really good all around food. Although this time we found the chips to be stale, which I am guessing is because they don't make them fresh so that was a bummer. Last time they were fresh out of the oil and so good with gaucamole/salsa. So that was a bit of a disappointment. The corn soup was good the first night we had it and lacked flavor the last 2 nights, I just had to see if it would be good again:). I always enjoyed the rice and beans my favorite:)
The rooms are nice still, we had room 23 its a bit of a hike to the restaurant which we don't mind, it's a gorgeous hike. We just weren't impressed with the room itself. Kind of small compared to the last time we stayed which was to the right of the entrance to the restaurant I wanna say three rooms before the end. This time the room was not very honeymoon suit like. The ones we stayed in before were much more impressive.We were wondering if they put us in this that because we brought our 11 month old with us this time. But it was nice enough a view of the valley. All around great place to experience.
The staff is awesome, very helpful and make you feel like family. They loved our baby and played with him and were very kind. They will arrange anything you need, they are great with people we loved them.

Room Tip: Choose the rooms on the same level as the restaurant. I know there is a room they try and keep vacan...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
XGerente, Manager at Xandari Resort & Spa, responded to this review, September 18, 2012
Dear JAL L,Thank you for letting us know what we are and are not doing right at Xandari.
We now bake, not fry, the tortilla chips, that's why they are different. They are a bit less crispy, but shouldn´t have been stale at all.
We have reviewed the soup recipe with the cooks so it should always be consistent in the future. We apologize and will keep an eye on these.
Villa#23 is a Prima Plus, you may have stayed in a larger Ultra or Ultra Plus villa during your previous stay (it coincides with the described location).
Thanks for commenting on our staff, we really enjoy our guests and we´re glad it shows.
We hope to have an opportunity to host you in the future, hopefully in an Ultra Plus villa!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Xandari Resort & Spa

Address: 1 km northwest of El Diamante Bar | Tacacori, Alajuela 4050, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Alajuela > Alajuela
Free Breakfast Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Alajuela
#1 Family Hotel in Alajuela
#1 Romantic Hotel in Alajuela
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Xandari Resort & Spa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 24
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Xandari is a 40-acre plantation with botanical gardens, orchid house and over 5 kms of nature trails including five waterfalls. Xandari is the creation of an architect-artist couple, with 24 spacious villas overlooking the Central Valley. Only 20 minutes from Juan Santamaria International Airport. In addition, three fabulous swimming pools, including the new 125 ft. Long Sunset Pool with a stunning view, and two outdoor jacuzzis. The restaurant serves fresh, continental and Costa Rican menu, featuring many organic fruits and vegetables from our own gardens. Xandari Spa Village is harmoniously integrated with nature and consists of a Yoga Room and five private palm-roofed jalapas with jacuzzi perched on a mountain ridge, where natural ingredients are used in massages and body treatments. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Xandari Resort And Spa
Xandari Hotel Alajuela
Xandari Resort & Spa Costa Rica/Alajuela

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