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“Beautiful View” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Condovac la Costa

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Hotel Condovac la Costa
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Playa Hermosa, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #7 of 12 Hotels in Playa Hermosa
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Beautiful View”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 28, 2013

We stayed at the Hotel Condovac from March 1st to 15th - one week on our own and 1 week with friends. Unfortunately they were not able to accomodate our request for a 2 bedroom or a room with a view due to a Triathalon that was being held there our second weekend. Our accomodation was average - dark in the living area and we had a view of a hill in the back and the road at the front. We met some great people on our 500 block and definitely made the best of our stay by setting up our dining table outside. We went on some great tours with Mardigi - Rivierboat and the Arenal Volcano - Marvin and Mark were great! Mark was relentless about our search for wildlife on the tour - we saw a Mother Sloth with her baby wrapped around her - amazing! The beach was OK - not white sand and blue water and was very cold while we were there. Mostly spanish speaking at the hotel - luckily my boyfriend had some Spanish skills that really helped. The chairs at the pool were uncomfortable and most were broken but the view over the infinity pool was spectacular!! Very quiet while we were there except on weekends when local families would show up. Can't say much about the entertainment as we did not participate in much - not enough people around! We loved our maid - Rachel - she was amazing but we found out that she was fired a couple of days before we left - no one seemed to know what happened! We had several massages at the Spa and some on the beach - the girls were very good! All in all, I enjoyed my stay thanks to the Mardigi people like Diana - who was very helpful. I would not return though as there was so many other places to see.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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294 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (82)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Nova Scotia, CANADA
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2013

We shared a time share with friends for a week and then spent a 2nd week on our own at this Resort in the Guanacaste region. There is no rain in this region at this time of year; it is sunny and hot every day. Obviously, the result is pretty 'dried out' and 'rugged' looking landscape; not lush as you may at first envision when you think of Costa Rica. There are many different ecosystems in this country so if you'll willing to drive the distance you will find the beaches and lush green forests you may crave!

The Resort:
Being mid-March, we were surprised at how few people were to be found on the beach or around the pool during a majority of our stay but, the locals check in each weekend livening up the pool area. We were almost nervous that if we went missing, nobody would ever know! The rooms are a bit outdated but, kept clean by the maids each day. We stayed on the 500 block and enjoyed the parade of wildlife that visited us each evening. We’d start off with 100's of parrots playing in a couple of the trees in front of our rooms followed by the resident cat, followed by 'Sparky' the racoon who is usually on his own at around 6:30 p.m. or so, followed by a family of 4 or 5 racoons at around 9ish, followed by a black skunk shortly afterwards. We even had a family of Coatis one of the first evenings we were here. You're not supposed to feed the animals but, I think many of us broke that particular rule :) Howler monkeys are the highlight of the Resort. There is an entire family of them living here and they move from the entrance to the ziplines behind the infinity pool to different trees on/around the beach. They howl from time to time and sound very eerie! Cutest things ever! Take some time to watch them when they’re not just ‘hanging’ around the tree branches. A couple of people even spotted a white-faced monkey hanging out around the beach!
The hotel is supposed to conduct an inventory of your room contents prior to your departure but, they didn’t conduct the inventory of our room prior to our 4 a.m. departure; they just asked us to drop off the key. Our friends started a trend on 500 block the first week by bringing their dining room table out onto their patio deck along with a cushion and pillow from one of the chaise lounges in the living area. Who wants to be inside!!! There’s a ‘mini mart’ on site where you can purchase the basics as far as groceries go but, it’s expensive. There’s a larger supermarket about a 10 minute walk down the road which has a larger variety, however, be ready to pay $5 for a bag of Doritos (if that’s your thing)! Water is safe to drink. I won’t say much about the hills you have to climb to get up to the pool from the beach. It’s all in how you want to look at it; it’s great exercise but, if you have asthma and don’t plan to use the shuttles that are supposed to go by every 10 minutes, bring your puffer! Sunsets are beautiful to watch from everywhere! We watched it from the Infinity Pool , the end of 500 block and from two of the restaurants along the beach. I got some fantastic shots and even a video.
The view of the bay from the Infinity pool is amazing. They have a ‘cold’ tub which is a refresher after being in the heat of the sun. Not many people were happy with the wooden lounge chairs around the pool as they weren’t comfortable at all.
The chairs on the beach are chained up under the palm trees in the shade so if you want to be out in the sun, be prepared to negotiate to have some unchained (not sure who could help you with that). The water (when we were there) was murky along the shoreline so you couldn’t see what you were walking/swimming in until you got out past the breaking waves other than earlier in the morning during the last few days of our stay. It is certainly nothing like the clear, white sand beaches and deep turquoise waters of the Caribbean that we are used to visiting. There were sightings of a few poisonous water snakes so that made us a bit nervous about going into any type of murky water but, we never saw any personally. We did snorkel to the right of the entrance to the beach around the rocks the last two days we were there and were not disappointed. Not fantastic but, there were some colourful fish. As with most Resorts, there are timeshare agents from Vila Sol (another Resort that shares the beach) and elsewhere at the entrance to the beach; rumour from some guests is that what they promise you is not always what you will get if you attend the presentation. Not a surprise. We bought some great clay pottery from Eduardo on the beach. Great guy and they make great gifts! We also bought one for our fantastic neighbours as well who shovelled out our driveway while we were soaking up the sun.
We spent a few days of our first week using Mardigi (on sight in the Reception area) and Charlie's Adventures (on site at the entrance to the beach) to go on a few tours. We took the PALO VERDE tour with Mardigi- boat ride where you can enjoy natural life around Tempisque River. We saw white faced monkeys, crocodiles, iguanas, and different species of birds. We also did the ARENAL VOLCANO tour with Mardigi - a guided drive through some beautiful landscapes and quaint villages, followed by a visit of a forest reserve, followed by a soak in some hot springs. Some meals are included with the tours.; Costa Rican style. Finally we enjoyed the AGUACOMBO with Charlie’s - Full day where you go out on a boat to enjoy the area of Papagayo. The snorkeling was limited the day we went as the water was quite cloudy. You then fish with your own hand held line. One guy caught 3 red snapper but, no one else did. You then enjoy a BBQ Costa Rican style on a beach where you will see natural caves. Climb to the top of the hill over the caves and you won’t be disappointed by the view!! It takes 2+ hour drives to get from this area to the popular tours (with many bumpy roads) and it just wasn't worth it to us to go on any more than these 3 tours. We had enjoyed a lot of spectacular tours in other countries so we just oived vicariously through others who experienced Nicaragua and Monte Verde. The tour guides were all fantastic and entertaining so that made the driving time more fun for sure. Mark (Mardigi) stopped all along the route pointing our wildlife and birds he and the driver would spot up in the trees so we could take pictures. He was a fountain of useful information and had lots of history of Costa Rica to share. He even e-mailed us some of the incredible pics of the wildlife that he took during our tour that none us were able to capture quite so beautifully with our ‘point and click’ cameras. I was floored that he remembered us with all of the tours he had to do with others! He also took the time to stop on the way to the hot springs to try to find an English version of a ‘birds of Costa Rica’ book for one of our tour mates and didn’t give up until he found it! Marvin (Mardigi) was full of stories that kept us in stitches the entire tour and was also very knowledgeable as well. Always try to negotiate for deals with the vendors if you have a number of people in your party and want to pay cash; you may be rewarded! There is zip lining on site at the hotel for $35 if you’re interested in doing that instead of driving to ziplines that may be much further away. We didn’t do them. We did some snorkeling during the last part of our stay around the rocks to the right on the beach and saw many more interesting fish than we did on the tour! Check it out if this is something that interests you. We also used Mardigi to take us to and from the airport as they go out of their way to make sure you have everything you need before you get to the Resort; have them stop at the grocery store so you can stock up your kitchen. They will wait for you! Even at the end of the tours, they would let us stop at a bank machine or a market to get anything we may need before going back to the Resort. Take some time to get to know Diana who works the desk for Mardigi Tours at the Resort. She is an absolute treat and will help you out wherever she can!
We enjoyed free breakfast at the hotel restaurant twice as we had to book a couple of separate nights (they included breakfast). We had their buffet the first day and ordered the American breakfast the 2nd day; both time the food was fine. The rest of the meals we had out were at: The Rock Beach Bar- they have the cheapest beers on the beach! We enjoyed eating at Aqua Sport and most especially the El Velero Hotel beach bar as well! Great band at El Velero (2 brothers) played on Tuesday and Thursday nights and in town at the restaurant across from Lizard Lounge in Playa Del Coco on Saturdays. The food at El Velero was always outstanding and there was always a LOT of it! The rest of our meals we cooked on our own. Note: they use cheeze whiz topping for nachos instead of real cheddar at the three places I ate them at; guacamole was great everywhere we ate it. If you want some authentic Canadian cuisine, visit Papa Hogs just down the road from the Resort for their ribs (Fri./Sat. evenings) and their version of poutine. It’s owned by Canadians. We never did make it there.
Nightly Entertainment:
Only went to one show on the Resort: ‘International Night’ and left after about 10 minutes; not too entertaining but, they tried. The Hotel doesn’t post what the entertainment is where people will easily see it so most don’t know the shows are even happening. We went to the disco at the Resort another night where there were only 5 other people there. We danced to a few songs before moving back to our patio to enjoy drinks with some friends we met on our block. As previously mentioned, our favourite entertainment (other than our friends) was the wildlife!
HOT! Every morning, noon and night. In the 30’s all the time and no rain until about May I think it is. Very strange to be sure! Don’t come here if you don’t like it too hot. You don’t get a break except when you jump into the infinity pool, cold hot tub (next to the pool) or in your beautifully air-conditioned room!
Enjoy your stay and make sure you take in those sunsets!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Camp Hill, Pennsylvania, United States
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 16, 2013

Just returned from 1 week at Condovac. The good is that the staff is wonderful. The infinity pool is great, however the chairs around the pool all need replaced. Many of them were broken and they are very uncomfortable. The beach, bar and restaurant were good. Now for the bad. The rooms are totally outdated. Clean, but in need of upgrades. We stayed in the 500 unit. Short walk to the beach but took shuttle to pool. Felt like a criminal when they had to inspect our room from top to bottom before we left which was after we removed our suitecases. This was at 3:30am as we had to leave for our flight at 4:00am. They counted towels, silverware, dishes and looked behind the curtains, As stated above totally needs updated so can not imagine anyone taking anything from unit. Had a great week but was very disappointed in the unit. Looks like something left over from the 1940 or 1950 decor. Beds are in need of upgrade!!!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Sussex England
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2013

A well run timeshare complex located on the peaceful and delightful Playa Hermosa, a great tropical beach with a laid back ambience and easily accessed local facilities.The complex itself is built on a very steep hill but a most reliable free shuttle service runs every few minutes. One can be either very lazy or very energetic getting around the resort or to the beach itself which is literally a few seconds away! A good pool complex with far reaching sea and country views provides an excellent alternative.
The resort restaurent is above average but try as well the outstanding 'Ginger' nearby and for great fresh fish the 'El Velero' hotel right on the beach from where you can watch the daily and spectacular sunset!
Back at the resort howler monkeys,racoons,coatis and iguanas are regularily seen in the grounds as is an abundance of exotic birdlife. However while the local area provides ample interest,we recommend that treat yourself to at least a couple of the 'Mardigi' tours who have a knowledgable on-site representative. We particularily enjoyed the Paolo Verde National Park half day visit (river cruise perfect for bird watching!) and ,if you didn't stop off en-route, a day in the Monteverde Cloud forest is a must. We flew into San Jose, hired a car, and spent a couple a days at the Los Angeles Cloud Forest Resort closeby and experienced the fabulous Tropical Rain Forest's contrasting fauna and flora there. Take a waterproof jacket!
At Condovac sunshine and temperatures in the mid 30's are the norm and the sun shines non stop all day. (the exception we are told is the period Sept/mid October when heavy rain can occur though it is still very warm.)
You can now fly into the revamped and modern airport in Liberia which is just 25 minutes away rather than San Jose, but this tends to make flights more expensive.
Flights often arrive late in the evening at San Jose from your stopover at Miami and we thoroughly recommend overnight at The Holiday Inn Express less than a kilometer from the airport with a free 24 shuttle to and from the airport.From here it is 4 and a half hours by the busy Interamericana highway to Condovac but we found the quieter backroads, particularily Routes 21 and 18 which branch off the Interamericana north of the turning to Puntarenas and take a more western course, are, despite the lack of signage, full of fascinating views and scenery. Invest in the National Geographic 1:350,000 scale map of Costa Rica for a good detailed map.
We did not visit San Jose itself where there are apparently pickpockets etc at work but we found the locals absolutely friendly and charming where ever we went.
In short we would highly recomend this resort.

Room Tip: Appartments in Block 400 have good views and are well placed for the beach. 418 was ideal.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Big Canoe
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

We just returned from Costa Rica. It's a environmentally natural country. At first you're taken back, but the resort is in a great place, the staff is wonderful, the grounds and beach are very well maintained. The units, while being olde,r are complete and very comfortable; full kitchen, and the beds are comfortable. You have to remember that you are in nature with many of the local animals; monkey's, birds and other animals, which you can sit on your balconey and enjoy. The sunsets are beautiful

Take peoples advise and use Mardigi tours, Mark was great and the tour is well done. DO NOT take Plus Popagayo. They sell you a "deal" at the Tours and Information Center in Coco Beach ( Eduardo is a fast talker) We didn't get all the things he promised. Worse yet the tour group (Plus Papagayo) has problems. The tour to Monteverde took 17 hours! first the van broke down south of Liberia (no brakes). Thank goodness we were on flat ground, not in the mountains. We had to wait an hour for the next van. Overall it took 6 hours to get to the rain forest (a 3 + hour trip) Roads are primative (rough), but we were kept to a speed of ~20KPM. We found the reason the tires were bald. They had to change to the spare before decending. We took a short cut then blew a second tire. Stranded in the mountains (at dusk) we finally got wonderful local help. Great experience but could have been a real problem.
Condovac and Mardigi made the vacation wonderful

Room Tip: We had Room 605 with a good view and close to the beach
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 20 cities Reviews in 20 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

after reading several reviews on rci and trip advisor we booked a week here at condovac.expectations were too high.the place is worn and old.
cons....you pay for the use of the safe on a daily bases.the shuttle does not always run if there is an event here so you must walk up and down from the beach,very hilly.one restaurant,just so,so.facilities around the pool need updating.
plus side...pretty area,friendly helpful staff,ok beach,rooms ok and clean.
you will need a car if you wish to go anywhere else.
we are still here.

Room Tip: rooms 500 thru 600
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wichita, Kansas
15 reviews 15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2013

I was in Costa Rica the month of February. Condo vac is a family resort. They have many activities for kids and adults. The view of the ocean is awesome! The kids that work there are the best., they put on a show 3 nights a week after they have worked all day. They always have a smile on there face and want to make sure you are happy. Eduardo,Enrique ,Ingrid,Dinia, and Miguel are such a great asset to the resort!

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Additional Information about Hotel Condovac la Costa

Address: Playa Hermosa, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Playa Hermosa
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Room Service Spa Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#7 On the Beach Hotel in Playa Hermosa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 107
Also Known As:
Condovac La Costa Hotel
Condovac Costa
Condovac La Costa Playa Hermosa
Hotel Condovac La Costa Costa Rica/Playa Hermosa, Guanacaste

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