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“Clean and Comfortable with Friendly Service” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Casa Cook

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Casa Cook
Tamarindo, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #3 of 23 hotels in Tamarindo
Baltimore, Maryland
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
“Clean and Comfortable with Friendly Service”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2012

Getting our stay organized was very easy owing to Marie, the manager, who was helpful and very polite. We enjoyed our stay here and it is an oasis in Tamarindo (which is a bit of a hole - Tijuana by the Ocean). The staff has been extremely friendly and we were accommodated very well. We took a casita with kitchen and used it as much as we could. There is A/C inside, which you will need if you visit, and a pool right outside our French doors. The hotel opens onto the beach and there is an outside shower with footbath, so you can apply sand discipline before entering your casita. You can get laundry done and you are as close as seconds away to restaurants with sunset Happy Hour.
With an office on site, we had no needs unfulfilled and, as we found with the guests that we met, Casa Cook is the kind of place you return to year after year.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • 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.
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90 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    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 (19)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Dallas
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2012

The two cabanas are right on the beach, close enough to walk to town, but far enough to enjoy some peace and quiet. Everyone is very friendly and the staff guys will be your buddies by the time you leave. We really enjoyed having a kitchen. We cooked breakfast most mornings and a couple of lobster dinners on the barbecue grill (which they will bring to your doorstep). The only thing better would be a private little place to eat outside. The rooms were clean and AC worked well. We had monkeys come visit a few times. Overall, this is as advertised and we would go back. If you are booking tours, I would suggest doing it on your own, unless you're booking weeks in advance during the busy season. You will pay a 20-30% upcharge if the hotel does it for you. The best "tour" we found was to drive our rent car to Brasalito (Playa Conchal) and ask for Gallo (he's been there 27 years and Antonio plays soccer with him). Gallo is the spearfisherman for many local restaurants. He took us out in his boat, gave me a speargun, and let us snorkel with him to spear fish, catch lobster and harvest oysters. We then went back to Playa Conchal and cooked lobster and oysters and drank beer on the beach. He then gave us lobster to take home and cook that night, and lobster is very expensive in the markets. What a blast! Gallo is great! You need to speak a little Spanish though. Also, I don't think you need to visit here during the high season. It's dry and dusty and not very tropical. Go right after April, and you will find less people, more green stuff growing, less dust and much better prices. It will rain about 5:00 most days for about 30-60 minutes, but will be sunny during the day. Oh, and ask Marie about the pizza place up the street. It's the bomb! Hope that helps, and enjoy "la buena vida"!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
aPEX
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2012

This was our first international vacation, so we weren't sure exactly what to expect. We selected Casa Cook based on all of the great reviews. We were not disappointed! In fact, by the end of our stay we had visited other areas around Tamarindo, and saw other accomodations within Tamarindo, and there's no place we'd rather stay in Tamarindo than Casa Cook. We did not rent a car for this trip, but instead had Marie book our transportation to and from the Liberia airport. In fact, Marie took care of anything we needed during our stay from booking our canopy tour excursion, ordering food for delivery, checking out the giant spider (which turned out to be a crab) by the pool, to buying delicious banana bread from the German bakery truck that stops by twice per week.. Marie made our stay perfect! The entire staff at Casa Cook felt like family, by the time we had to head home. The beach is very private, and immaculately clean. Antonio must clean the beach every morning! There are many really good restaurants in walking distance, with a variety of cuisines to choose from, yet Casa Cook sits just on the edge, where you can enjoy privacy, and solitude if you choose. It just doesn't get any better than that.

Room Tip: The cabinas are perfect for couples, though would recommend the Casita for families.
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bedford, Texas
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 5, 2012

This place was home away from home in the truest sense of the word We stayed in one of the beachside cabinas during Green Season and it was tranquil, comfortable and low key. Steps to the beach. When Ruthann said this was the best part of the beach she was not mistaken(quiet with very few necklace/bird chirp vendors). It is a 10 minute walk to restaurants, grocery, banks, and the center of town. Antonio and the staff are very accommodating and the nighttime security is a great thing to have. Though we booked our own excursions, Marie was essential in my decisions for which ones to go on. We loved Tamarindo, plan to return and expect to stay nowhere but Casa Cook when we do. Hopefully it is with our Mahi Mahi catch of the day BBQ'ing fish tacos in front of our cabina with Buddy the Cat.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2012

Loved this place. There are only 4 units plus the owners home. It is right on the beach and far enough down from the hustle bustle of the surf shops to have some peace but close enough for an easy walk down the beach for the restaurants. The units have kitchens and the grocery store is right down the street. Ruth Ann has a fullmtime staff of several people even though so small. They are always cleaning the grounds, rakingnthe beach, wiping down chairs. They will carry the chairs out to the beach for you. The property is gated, so very secure. 24 hr patrol so very safe.

Room Tip: The cabins are good for 2 people. We are a family of 4 so we took the casita for more space.
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  • Stayed July 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh
Top Contributor
61 reviews 61 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2012

This is an exceptional setting in Tamarindo. We stayed here as a family of four. The booking process via e-mail with Marie worked well. The villa is right next to the beach at Tamarindo and offers great sunsets. There are 2 cabinas, which can sleep 4 but suit a couple and the lower floor of the main house, which we used. It was perfect. The staff were very helpful, especially Marie. The owner, Ruthann, was also charming. The rooms have fans and A/C and are comfortable. There is a pool in the middle of the garden, which is perfect for a dip on a hot day. There are body-boards you can borrow and it is just straight out the gate to the surf. We organized surfing lessons, which were delivered from the villa. They also have a very good laundry service. The villa is patrolled at night and the gates front and back are locked making it feel secure. There are many excellent restaurants within 10 minutes walk and it is fun returning along the beach at night with your torch watching the hermit crabs scurry around.

The stay was cheaper, and nicer, than many hotels. If you get the chance to visit Tamarindo this is wonderful place to stay.

Room Tip: The lower floor of the main house is best for space.
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  • Stayed July 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, GA
1 review
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2012

I took my wife to Tamarindo a couple of weeks ago for a very significant Birthday. For the first time in our travels together she said...When can we come back? And this was only a few days into our week long stay. She also said...Best Birthday Ever!!! As much as I like to think it was me- I think she fell in love with the warm water, beautiful beach, and as she describes it- Sunset Ceremony. Cocktails on the beach at sundown every night of our stay. Sunsets all amazing, all different. We also fell in love with Casa Cook. Staff was great- polite, helpful, HAPPY. Ruthann the owner is a dear, and her love of this part of the world is obvious and contagious. And can't forget Marie/Maria- who knows everyone and everything, and can "make a call" and make it happen- no matter the request.

My wife has done considerable overseas travel, but this was a first for me. I did a lot of research, including hours on trip advisor, both for destinations and lodging. Once I settled on Tamarindo, Casa Cook jumped out with the sheer exuberance of the reviews- and at the time I was planning our trip- not a single negative review out of over 50. You don't see that very often. Unfortunately that pristine record was broken shortly before our arrival in Tamarindo, with a negative review that I must take exception to.

The negative review was from someone who stayed (for a couple of days) in the Casita, as did we. They started off by griping that they thought Casa Cook was a Bed and Breakfast and were surprised to find it isn't. There is nothing on Trip Advisor, Casa Cook's web site or anywhere else that mentions breakfast, or any dining or bar service so I don't know why they got the B&B idea. Then they went off on being shown an "Office" with no privacy- windows everywhere- thin curtains, and unenclosed bedroom, etc.

Let me properly describe Casa Cook, and the Casita in particular. Forget B&B. Forget Hotel. Think Guest Apartment on your favorite Aunt's country estate!! Where you are close to everything, but away from it all. Where you can have fine dining (or a fish taco) in 10 minutes (really 5) in either direction down the beach. Or- you can shop for groceries ( a cab is a few dollars) at the Alta Mercado at the other end of town, and prepare your own meals in the fully equipped kitchen- not an efficiency- a real kitchen. No dishwasher- but guess what, the housekeepers do your dishes every morning. Where you can have coffee and a wonderful fruit smoothy for breakfast overlooking the pool. Where occasionally you run into some of your favorite Aunt's other friends in the pool, and compare notes on adventures and dining experiences and recommendations.

It is true the Casita has a lot of windows. Guess what- open the windows during the day and the Casita stays wonderfully cool- even when it's 90+. We only used the air conditioner a little at night. The window treatments are a sunbrella type fabric. Terrific because they provide privacy while allowing you to see out and allow the sun hitting the water in the morning to gently wake you.
I suppose at night if you had a light on on the bedroom and walked in front of it you might be silhouetted in the window, but who cares- you are spending most of each day in the water or on the beach with little clothing anyway.

The entire Casita is relatively open- like a lot of tropical buildings, they use partial walls to help with air-flow and it really works. There is a large bedroom enclosed by these walls and a living area with two futons that opened to the kitchen. It was perfect for a couple, and we plan to take our teenage kids next time- but may not be right for people that want to shut themselves up in a bedroom. The bath was plenty large enough (shower for two?) and everything clean, clean, clean- every day. Oh, and by the way- we thought the bed was very comfortable. We have a temperpedic at home and like a firm supportive mattress- and slept great every night.

Casa Cook is on the beach. I mean ON THE BEACH. You can watch surfers from the pool. You don't have to schlep "stuff" to the beach. You can leave your towel (and cervesa) by the pool, play in the ocean, and get back before the cervesa gets warm!! The tides in Tamarindo are amazing. High tide- the waves wash over your feet as you sit just outside th the gate. Low tide- the water is 50 yards out- uncovering to either side of Casa Cook the most fantastic surface of the moon landscapes of lava rock, with coral, urchins and small fish in the captured tidal pools. But in front of Casa Cook- just more beautiful sandy beach- one of the few spots along Tamarindo Bay with absolutely no rocks at low OR high tide.

We planned to take a few excursions during this trip- maybe the volcano, hot springs and a river ride- but have to admit- once we got there, we just didn't leave- for anything. Just alternated between the ocean, the pool, the hammocks on the beach- a walk to town. We purposely didn't have a car- and really didn't miss it at all. Well- I did take a gyrocopter ride over the beach. Highly recommended- absolutely a blast- saw ton of fish, turtles, SHARKS and rays- mostly down by Playa Grande

Like many others have said- it's tempting to try to keep this place a secret- but that isn't fair to Casa Cook- or to you- the next guests in Auntie's guest house.

Room Tip: The Casita is roomy, cool during the day, and has a lovely outdoor dining area overlooking the pool.
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  • Stayed April 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Casa Cook

Also Known As:
Casa Cook Hotel
Casa Cook Tamarindo
Casa Cook Hotel Tamarindo
Address: Tamarindo, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Tamarindo
Amenities:
Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Tamarindo
#7 Romantic Hotel in Tamarindo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$

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