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“Beautiful property” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Flying Crocodile

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Hotel Flying Crocodile
Codico 5235, Apdo. 99, Playa Samara, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 15 Hotels in Playa Samara
Seattle, Washington
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Beautiful property”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2014

Our family (two adults, girls aged 1 and 4) stayed here in mid-March for two nights, and very much enjoyed our visit. The hotel grounds are beautifully landscaped, with lush vegetation and paths winding among the cabins making a fun place for small children to explore. There's lots of wildlife to see on the property: howler monkeys pass through each day, iguanas roam the paths, and occasionally you can see a coati scurry by. At the centre of the property is a magnificent guanacaste tree, and it and the other mature trees are filled with birdsong. The place is very well maintained, and our room was spotlessly clean. We stayed in the Enkidu room, which makes one half of a large cabin split with the Gilgamesh room. The room is very spacious, and made a great space for the kids to play.

We enjoyed the breakfast buffet, with plenty of fresh fruit, cereals and eggs to give us and girls a good start to the day. Lunch and dinner menus are limited, and as vegetarians, there wasn't too much for us to chose from. In the evening, we also tried the pizza at El Castillo near the beach. The pizza was great, but it took a very long time to come (over an hour - better to order ahead). Apparently it was a busy day, but there were interesting people to talk to, and we got to see the crocodiles across the estuary.

Playa Buenavista itself is about 12 minutes away on foot. Other reviewers have commented that this beach is dirty, and it's true that near the road end, there's a fair amount of trash, despite some obvious bins for garbage and recycling. Once you cross that small area onto the beach proper, it's as pristine as almost anywhere else in Costa Rica. The best part was that it was almost deserted when we were there - we had a gorgeous Pacific beach pretty much to ourselves.

Overall, we had a great time at the Flying Crocodile, and would happily visit again!

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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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121 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (17)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bucharest
Top Contributor
96 reviews 96 reviews
32 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 30, 2014

It is not very easy to reach, but it was worth it.
The staff was very friendly - helped us solve a problem with the rental car and agency.
The rooms were large and clean, tastefully furbished.
You can find lots of animals in the garden, any time of day or night (we had an armadillo that came to our room every night). The sound of the howler monkeys can be very creepy, especially at night, but you get used to it. Iguanas are strolling everywhere, but they're not aggressive.
The pool was never crowded and it had everything you could want in order to relax.

Breakfast was not much and it was the same every day. Scrambled eggs were on demand only. There was ham, cheese, butter, jam, tomatoes and cucumbers. Fruit juice was always good and there was a variety of fruits also available.

It is not far from the beach (a short walk).

I would recommend this hotel for a stay in the middle of nature.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Toronto, Canada
Top Contributor
75 reviews 75 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
109 helpful votes 109 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 24, 2014

I had the pleasure of staying here for 3 nights (wish I would of stayed longer). I had fallen in love with this hotel first time I viewed it and booked many months in advance and it did not dissappoint.

Although all the lodgings looked lovely to me the Scarlet Macaw room caught my eye. Two story bungalow with a big, bright beautiful bathroom, stain glass windows and private balcony. Once I saw the room it was more beautiful than the photos. The wooden spiral stairwill going up stairs was so lovely at night with the dim lights and large long windows. There is no AC needed - the ceiling fans worked fine.

The grounds of the hotel are beautiful. Your own little jungle oasis. Gardens are kept very clean and lovely pool. There is a trampoline in the shade and pool table and fooz ball - along with some other games.

Breakfast included in the morning is lovely. You can ask for eggs any way you like them, there is fresh ham, lovely cheeses, tomatoes, onions and cucumbers to make a lovely sandwich. Fresh fruit and cereal offered. Lunch & dinner available. There is a chalk board and dinner options are offered for you to order. Fabulous. Every meal I had was superb. There are a few options every day and I actually looked forward to see what was available. I'm not a big foodie - but really this food was amazing. You could go for pizza at El Costello - but there was no one there the day we went. I heard the pizza was amazing there.

Bar to purchase drinks at a very reanable price. I stayed with my 9 year old grandson and we had a great time. The beach is a few minutes walk away where howlers will entertain you along the way. Did I mention this was howlermania? They were everywhere. How entertaining. There is a store with minimal supplies a few minutes away. Always a nice walk to get an ice cream.

We walked over the rocks to the beach next door where Mel Gibson has his estate. How lovely. Playa Buena Vista was beautiful. Rarely anyone on the beach. This is the life.

I did not have a car and really do not see the need you would need one to go into Samara. We stayed there after our stay and really Flying Crocodile had everything we needed. Great food, beautiful grounds and the staff were amazing. Andrea & Petra were most wonderful hosts. Helping you with anything you ask. As I said before - wish I would of stayed longer. This a great place for people that love nature and just want to relax. Paradise.

  • Stayed March 2014, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ocean Shores, Washington
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2014

We really enjoyed the flight in the ultralite that is based at Flying Crocodile Hotel. Joerg, the pilot was great!! An amazing experience. So, we decided to stay at flying croc. and the only room available was the budget room as they called it. Not the best choice. The dinner was pathetic, but as we were starving, we ate without complaint. The staff was very nice, but the ploace really needs some care, the pool was gross, the outdoor furniture was to be desired, I wouldn't sit on it.
The hotel could be a showplace with some work.

Room Tip: Do not take the "budget room" I had ants crawling over me in the night
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  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2014

We had the most awful experience at the Flying Crocodile. The food was inedible, the the bed un-sleepable, the air-conditioning inadequate and the experience horrible. When we tried to check out after the the first night of a 4 night stay we were told we would be responsible for the entire 4 nights bill. When they asked what was wrong and we complained about the bed (lumpy, uncomfortable, worn torn sheets) her response was that "It is old". We worked it out with the help of our travel agent and only lost our deposit and the one nights stay. I wouldn't recommend this hotel to anyone.

  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Darnestown, Maryland, USA
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2014

I stayed during a solo motorcycle trip around Costa Rica, and the Hotel Flying Crocodile was an amazing spot to relax and enjoy the jungle wildlife. The staff were welcoming and friendly, the grounds were beautifully manicured, and the accommodations were perfectly suited for the environment.

The detached cabanas surrounded a nice pool in a private yet convenient setting. From my porch I observed a family of Howler Monkeys foraging it the trees directly overhead. The staff served an excellent breakfast but I did not try dinner on site.

The Flying Crocodile is located about 15 minutes from Samara, so it is best to have your own transportation if you would like to enjoy the beach and restaurants in town. There is a local beach within walking distance (Playa Buenavista), a beautiful and secluded white-sand beach just to the North (Playa Barringona), and of course Samara 15 minutes to the South.

There is a gyro-copter tour business on site, and it is fun to watch the small craft take off and land even for those not braving the open cabin flight.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Bucharest
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2014

Location: a few km from Samara, on an unpaved road, like many other hotels. You need a car to get there, preferably a 4 wd. A Suzuki Jimny will do it. It's not about the actual 4wd, it's about the ground clearance. You will have to pass through a river, which is 4cm (2 inches) high in the dry season. I understood that during the rainy season, there is another path. Because of this river, the GPS (at least on iGO, might force you to take a detour, just to end up at the same river). TomTom route was shorter. Best thing is to enter directly the coordinates.

Beach can be reached withing a 10 minute walk. Beware of the tide. Also there is an estuary nearby, along with some signs warning about crocodiles around the estuary, so avoid going there at night and watch your steps.

Room: I loved the way it was decorated. Beautiful shapes, avoiding the straight lines - a nice surprise. Room has a little refrigerator. There are some shelves and hangers for putting your clothes. You have a small table with chairs on the veranda. Room also has A/C and a ceiling fan (which seemed to me more efficient then the A/C).

Reception: Andrea was very nice. She speaks fluently German, English and I think also Spanish. She was very helpful with any information we needed.

Breakfast and dinner: Breakfast does not have a very wide variety and I can understand things are optimized to minimize losses, since there aren't that many bungalows, and hence not such a big crowd of tourists. Don't take this the wrong way: I really appreciated the omelette you could get on demand and fresh smoothies every morning, plus the fresh papaya slices.

For dinner there is a daily selection of 3 dishes which you should choose by 1 pm. Dinner is served around 7-7:30 pm. If you have special needs, something can be arranged. Prices for dinner are between 8-13$, non-alcoholic drinks or the local beer cost 2$/bottle.

Swimming pool: small, has 3 sections: one for kids, one for laying in the sun, while in the water and one for swimming (it gets to about 2m at one end). Since it's in the middle of nature, you might see all sort of bugs around, but this is everywhere and perfectly normal, when in nature.

Services: Wi-fi: free, open, working nicely. Cleaning don't go out of their way when it comes to cleaning - they just rearrange the bed and take the garbage out - at least that's all I noticed.

Parking: available, free of charge, inside the hotel premises.

You can try their flying machine if you're into it and don't mind paying over 100$ for 20 minutes of flying, but it seems to be quite an experience.

Wildlife around: iguanas (different varieties) - you will see a lot of them, armadillo, mud crabs, howler monkeys (the first time you'll hear them, they will make you shiver in your bed, at 5am), geckos, all sort of birds, we've seen even a black vulture and a colibri (all close-by).

Room Tip: Habitacion #3 is a good location to observe the mud crabs and especially the armadillo which seems t...
See more room tips
  • Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Flying Crocodile

Address: Codico 5235, Apdo. 99, Playa Samara, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Playa Samara
Amenities:
Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Best Value Hotel in Playa Samara
#2 Family Hotel in Playa Samara
#6 Romantic Hotel in Playa Samara
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 9
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Also Known As:
Flying Crocodile Hotel

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