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“what more can you want” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Banana Azul

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Hotel Banana Azul
Playa Negra, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica   |  
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Ghent, Belgium
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
53 helpful votes 53 helpful votes
“what more can you want”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2014

We looked for a perfect hotel to spend the last few days in costa rica and definatly found it in Banana Azul. We didnt book in advance (we dont plan our trips in advance) and as Banana Azul is quite a popular hotel there was actually no room for the first night. The staff was kind enough to give us the emergency room for the first night. They appologized for a few times because that room wasnt representative for their hotel but actually it was quite a cosy and very clean room. But the other 3 nights we stayed in 2 different types of rooms. The first one downstairs, with ac, tv and an amazing outside bathroom. The next 2 nights we stayed upstairs with an amasing balcony, no AC but that wasnt a problem. All the rooms were very comfortable and beautifull decorated. Very nice and attentive staff, yummy food, tasty fresh coconuts, ... What more can you want.

  • Stayed March 2014, 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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919 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    730
    134
    35
    9
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5
Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (253)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
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English first
Marathon, Florida
2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2014

It was our first time in Costa Rica, We were going to be traveling for three weeks, Banana Azul was our first stop, and what a great start to our vacation. Everything was top notch! cant say enough about this place. I recommend the Howler suite!! could have stayed there for ever! A big Thank-you to the staff!!

  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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.
Arlington, Massachusetts
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2014

I write this almost one year from my dream honeymoon on the beach. The hotel owners didn't even know it was our honeymoon.. and it was STILL absolutely amazing.

It's like getting to live for a blissful (weekend, week, month? How lucky will YOU be?) on a quiet and remote suburb of a suburb of a rasta surf town. In Costa Rica. It is not: loud, urban, party-all-night. It IS: peaceful, relaxing, indulgent, casually social..

Owners are absolutely fabulous. Hotel meals (very, very reasonably priced and delicious) were something we looked forward to daily. While sitting on our little corner of a secluded beach in paradise.

The hotel pool has a nice shady cabana and is small and cool, refreshing in the heat of the day. We stayed in a room aptly named "the apartment" which is apparently where the owners used to live. Two bedrooms, full kitchen and we hosted a surprise menagerie of small visitors (tree frogs, friendly cat, lizards, etc) It is very rustic- blurred lines of indoors/outdoors- think- huge open windows to the forest/jungle and the seaside near the ocean... In a good way- no screens though. We didnt particularly need them, but I'm just saying..
I'm an outdoor girl so I thought this was great. Like a tropical treehouse for adults. I announced to everyone and noone in particular while I was there that I wasn't leaving (still had to leave eventually.. boooo)

I'm going to sell seashell necklaces or bike rentals or something and live my dream life there. Ok, I digress. But seriously.

AMAZING!
xoxo

Room Tip: I stayed in one of the largest rental spaces there.. I can't speak for the smaller, lower priced...
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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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Pasadena, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 14, 2014

I really wanted to stay on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica when looking for a honeymoon spot since our other travels in the Caribbean have been very positive. I had just about given up trying to find a nice place when I found Banana Azul on Trip Advisor.

All of the reviews and photos looked great, and the value is excellent. I contacted Banana Azul prior to booking via email to see if the most recommended room (#1 Howler) was available. They got back to me right away and told me it wasn't, but room #2 was, so I went ahead and booked it for our 4 night stay. The staff was very quick to respond to subsequent emails asking different questions about the hotel and area, which was nice. Also received an email from Gecko Adventures explaining they're adventure booking services.

The staff were welcoming upon arrival. The grounds of the hotel are incredibly designed, and very inviting. Loved the ponds and streams with the fish and turtles.

The owner Colin found us while we were sitting on the beach and taking in the scenery. He welcomed us and we chatted a bit. That was so nice to greeted by the owner.

The room we had is very open and airy, and had opaque panels on half of the ceiling to let in natural sunlight. There's a nice fan to help cool the room down, as there isn't AC in the room. I was a bit worried about it being too hot, which is was during the day, but the cooler air at night made it pretty pleasant to sleep.

The drawback of the openness of the room and the lack of AC was that we had to sleep with the patio doors open, and with the loud waves, for light sleepers, makes it's tough to sleep. There are no screen doors or screens on the bathroom windows, so bugs can come in with nothing to stop them beside the mosquito net we had to have over us while sleeping. One other negative was the plastic ceiling when it would rain. It was so loud. The rooms could have been cleaned more thoroughly, and had better quality sheets and towels. The hammock on the patio was in need of a wash, as it smelled moldy. The only thing dividing the rooms on the patio were accordion privacy screens, so the next door guest could have walked into the room at any time. Therefor, we had to secure our valuables in the rooms lock box every time we left the room.

A nice thing about Banana Azul is the breakfast that's included in the nightly price. It was always tasty, and there was a rotating special. The kitchen also serves lunch (which we were never around to have) and the menu looked fine. We had dinner all but one night, and they were mighty tasty. There is a standard menu, and nightly specials, all of which are reasonably priced.

The hotel has it's own private beach, and it's incredible, complete with nice lounge chairs with and cabanas. It is located on Playa Negra, which is a beautiful black sand beach that has nice waves. The hotel has a drink cart during the day right on the beach.

Overall, the hotel is good and cost effective. For light sleepers, and those looking for more privacy like us, it may not be a good fit.

Room Tip: We had room #2, which is supposed to be the 2nd best room after the room closest to the water (Howle...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Jaco, Costa Rica
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 10, 2014 via mobile

We stayed here for my wife's 30th birthday. This place has it all figured out. The property is immaculate and the staff is amazing. We live on the pacific side of Costa Rica and will be back to visit Banana Azul many more times! Thank you to the staff

Stayed April 2014, traveled with family
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Gainesville, Florida
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2014

After the conclusion of our travel over Costa Rica (La Fortuna, Monteverde, and Tambor) this place was our most favorite. We wished this would have concluded our trip and stayed the longest here. The stay was great, the food and drink was the best! I will be sure to reccommend. If there was anything negative, I would say that on one night several people came in and/or out of the gate and had to yell for the gate guard. I think the idea of a guard at night, allowed for sleepful night with out worries, if there was any but I would reccommend that hotel staff tell taxis/bus to not enter through gate at night to allow for a little less noise to guests. Our room, one of the sloth cabinas, was closest to the gate so with the windows open they could be heard well. Rented bikes to ride into town. Woke up to coffee and sunrises on the beach. Traveled 5/21-5/23/2014. Wonderful experince!!!!

Room Tip: Sloth Cabina's were closet to the gate. Like stated in review, may be a little noisy if people c...
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  • Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
Warrenville, Illinois
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 7, 2014

This was the last stop on our trip to Costa Rica and it was a wonderfully relaxing way to end our vacation. The hotel was absolutely lovely; the grounds are beautiful and very well maintained. We booked a garden room, which has the shower and a bathtub big enough for two on the enclosed patio. It was also one of the few rooms with air conditioning, which we put to good use. The included breakfast was very good and it was great having a restaurant and a bar on site-they even set up a bar cart on the beach. Drink specials and the dinner menu change daily. The hotel provides chairs and umbrellas on the beach and will even bring your lunch to your lounge chair. The location is perfect-this hotel feels secluded yet is only minutes from town. I wish we had had a couple more days to spend here.

Room Tip: If you want air conditioning you need to book a garden bath room.
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  • Stayed May 2014, 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
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 Banana Azul

Address: Playa Negra, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Limon > Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
#1 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Viejo de Talamanca
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Banana Azul hotel is a small and simple hotel north of town on Playa Negra. The small boutique hotel has been created with care using local products and a philosophy that emphasizes relaxation. We cater to adults, 16 years and over. Blooming gardens adorn the property, as does several freely-hanging hammocks, providing the perfect spot for afternoon napping or leisurely reading. A meandering pond inhabited by fish and turtles flows through portions of the property adding a lighter element to the ongoing natural soundtrack of waves crashing against the shoreline. The hotel consists of fourteen beautiful guest rooms with private baths, fans, and free wireless internet. Most rooms are on the second floor of the main building, and open onto a large veranda with sweeping ocean views and of the garden. Banana Azul offers its guests a quaint restaurant that serves a complimentary filling breakfast, variety of lunch options and refreshing drinks throughout the day and a relaxing three entre dinner option in a romantic atmosphere at night. Gecko Trail Adventures tour company is on site to assist with tours and transportation needs and can assist with a variety of package options including visits to the Arenal Volcano, canopy tours, snorkeling trips, and even rafting excursions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Banana Azul Hotel
Banana Azul Puerto Viejo
Hotel Banana Azul Costa Rica/Limon

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