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“Paradise” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Forest Hills Suites

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Forest Hills Suites
3.5 of 5 Small Hotel   |   Herradura, Jaco, Costa Rica   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 19 Jaco B&B and Inns
San Antonio, Texas
Senior Contributor
35 reviews 35 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Paradise”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 18, 2012

We just returned from renting this entire mansion for our family of 10 people. It was a wonderful experience. The mansion is so unique and beautiful and full of original artwork to enjoy. The bedding is of high quality in each bedroom and the living room has a huge LCD TV with every channel you can imagine. The simple driving instructions took us easily to the mansion coming from San Jose. The hotel was very well maintained and Erika is one of the sweetest people on planet Earth and a true professional in all respects! Her english is perfect and I could talk with her for hours (and did) and enjoyed each minute of it. The mansion is air conditioned and extremely comfortable. There is a security guard stationed in the yard area 24/7, the grounds are simply beautiful and the pool is delightful and maintained by a full time gardener. You will not want to leave this paridise. I highly reccommend this spot for anyone and especially for large families that want to rent the entire place, as we did. You can enjoy your time together so much more staying in a place like this. The grocery store on the corner is well stocked with everything you could possibly need to procure for a great visit and the owner give you the "run of the kitchen".. Each morning the attractive housekeeper prepared a continental breakfast of coffee, sliced fruit, and toasts. If you are like us and desire a more hearty breakfast, you can buy eggs, and ham or bacon and prepare it in the electric skillet to complete and add to the breakfast.

My Brother hired the "chef" that is mentioned by some other reviewers for a family meal on our 2nd night at Forest Hills. He visited in the morning to plan the menu and set the serving times for appetizers and dinner. The labor fee was $200 for he and his assistant's services with my brother also paying for the groceries which the cook did the shopping for. The cook and his girlfriend were extremely hard workers and worked most of the day shopping, prepping and cooking the dinner. Because of the very limited cooking equipment (a bbq grill, microwave, and an electric skillet) the cook could not meet planned appetizer and dinner times. (over an hour late for dinner). The food was good with some items being excellent and others being mediocre in my opinion. I grew up in the restuarant business and I'm critical so other family members could have other opinions. The price per person ended up being around $40 per person. I truly believe once Erika is successful in getting the awesome commercial oven and stove that is currently present in the mansion kitchen working, hiring this cook could become a good value, but not now.

The first night we were at the mansion we all dined at a local Jaco restaurant called Lemon Zest. This is an EXCELLENT restaurant owned and operated by Richard Lemon from Florida. Richard owned a very upscale, fine dining restaurant for many years in Florida and like us began visiting Costa Rica on vacation and fell in love with the country. Richard saw the need for an "American style" fine dining restaurant and sold their highly successful restaurant in Florida and began Lemon Zest in Jaco. It is a family operation and the service is simply incredible. The bar drinks were handmade and fantastic and every one in our group of 10 had a delightful meal. It is rare in the US for the chef of a fine dining restaurant to come out into the dining room and meet with guests, but Richard came out, chatted with the group, and made us feel welcome, introducting us to his wife, son, and grandchild. Richard even made two different types of bithday cakes for us and both were delicious. These meals averaged less than the $40 mentioned above (with drinks) and everyone of our group of 10 meals came out at the same time (which is rare in CR).. I had a filet Mignon with was as good as any I have experienced in the US. I can't stress enough what a great restaurant this is!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
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63 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (15)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
wisconsin
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2012

April 2012 - We wanted to stay near Jacó but were unimpressed with properties available in Jacó. We had a vehicle and gave this a try. I figured I only had one night's deposit to lose if I didn't like it. This is a modern mansion and I understand it was built for the architect of the marina complex to live during it's creation. No expense was spared as the home and grounds are spectacular. The ceilings of all rooms are vaulted and rise about twenty feet with high hand crafted doors and built-ins. There is ceramic tile every where which is a must for hotels.

There are full time groundskeepers to keep the gardens looking something like La Paz. Once my wife went to use the pool and a worker raced over the make sure there wasn't a single leaf in the pool as it sits below beautiful huge trees. See my photos for a Toucan that lives in the trees outside the bedroom. Every morning at breakfast it came and pecked on the window.

We were the only ones staying here at the time but I felt very safe as there is a full time guard on the grounds after daylight. Every bedroom has it's own lock code and separate air conditioner. As with typical Costa Rica, there are no window screens so we used the air conditioner. I was afraid it would be undersized with the high ceilings but it performed perfectly. WiFi worked for my iPad in the bedroom, great room and outside patio. There is a safe in the room for valuables.

Employees come in the morning and make a breakfast of fresh fruit and breads with coffee.

We went to Jacó every night for dinner and it's an easy ten minute drive on level and wide roads.

During the days, we drove to Manuel Antonio (little over an hour on new, wide road). Carara National Park is about a half hour north - use http://www.victourscr.com as Victor is simply the best in Costa Rica. Tarcoles is also near Carara.

Ericka, a Tico, is the manager and she speaks perfect english as she's spent a lot of time in the USA. She's naturally personable and fun to talk with and ask any questions about Costa Rica. She comes to work at breakfast and stays late in the evenings to make sure your needs are met.

The only thing negative thing is the two smaller bedrooms share a bath room. There was nobody in the other bedroom so it didn't matter but you might want to get the more expensive rooms if this bothers you.

When we return to Costa Rica, I would base my vacation around Forest Hills Suites availability because it's that good.

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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.
, General Manager at Forest Hills Suites, responded to this review, July 14, 2012
Thank you so much for your comprehensive review of our mansion hotel. I think you covered all the bases! If more travelers took the time to do such a complete and unbiased review of the hotels and resorts they have stayed at, we think that all of the world's travelers would have their vacations enhanced. Of course we're extremely proud of of our hotel mansion. We are delighted that you noticed and approve of what we've done and what we're trying to do. That is, leave no stone unturned to make our guests' experience at Forest Hills Suites a memory they will cherish for the rest of their lives. That's quite an aspirational goal on our part, but as long as there are appreciative guests like you, we'll keep striving to make this goal a reality year after year. We are really looking forward to serving you again on your next visit to Costa Rica. Thank you, and kind best wished for wonderful travels in your future.
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London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2012

My husband and I stayed at Forest Hills Suites for 5 nights and we were shocked with the level of hospitality we received. I will be honest with you when I read the other reviews I wasn’t quite sure whether to believe them, I though even the best hotels I had visited had some bad reviews but I can honestly say that all the amazing comments in the other reviews were lived up to and more.

Firstly Jan was amazing in getting back to us and booking the room, even upgrading us to a bigger room.

Then I was put in touch with Erika to book trips ect. Ericka was really fast at getting back to me and extremely friendly and helpful. She booked a taxi to pick us up from the airport, made breakfast everyday (even super early before trips), recommended great restaurants and booked all our tours. Ericka is the type of person you meet and then wish she didn’t live so far away because she would make a great friend!

The tours we went on were as below:

Arenal Volcano – we were picked up early in the morning by our tour guide Pedro, he spoke perfect English (my husband and I speak no Spanish) and was extremely knowledgeable and friendly. On the way we stopped to see scarlet macaws, crocodiles and many plans, trees and fruits. Pedro even stopped at a fruit stall at the side of the road and brought us many different fruits and some nuts to try. We then drove through the cloud forest and went to La Fortuna waterfall which was absolutely beautiful (this was one of my favorite thing of my whole holiday) Pedro used our camera and got some amazing pictures of us in and around the waterfall. We then sat near the waterfall and had mango’s that Pedro had bought for us, these were the most amazing fruit I have ever tasted in my life! We then carried on our trip to see the volcano, this was really beautiful and we were even lucky enough for the steam / cloud to pass so we could see the peak. After this we went to the Baldi hot springs which was really relaxing and beautiful. This whole day was incredible and I would recommend this anyone visiting Costa Rica. Pedro really tried hard and succeeded to make this day really special for us.

Manuel Antonio National Park – this was a lovely day, again we were picked up early by Pedro and even persuaded Ericka to join us on the trip. Pedro made a few stops on the way to teach us a lot about Costa Rican culture and history and show us different plans/ trees and fruit that we didn’t see traveling north on the way to Arenal. At the park we see lots of White Faced Monkeys up close, some Sloths that were high in the trees sleeping and Hula Monkeys. We also see lots of lizards, crabs and birds. The beaches here were incredible, before heading home we went to a lovely resultant with a beautiful view of Manuel Antonio.

Tortuga Island – We were picked up from our hotel early and driven to the dock were we were offered a cooked breakfast, we then boarded the boat which offered drinks, fruit and snakes (all included in the price) when we arrived at the island we were offer the option to do snorkeling or go on a banana boat – you can do both one in the morning and the other in the afternoon. We had a 5 course lunch here which was lovely all to a beautiful band that were playing.

All these trips were great value for money and we had no suggestions of how to make them better simply because they were all perfect and my husband and I are not the type that are easily pleased!

This was a work trip that I had extended so after our stay here we moved to The Marriot Los Suenos which was lovely and everything you would expect but if I was to come back to Costa Rica I would most definitely come back to Forest Hills Suites because of the personal aspect of the hotel and staff.

  • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, General Manager at Forest Hills Suites, responded to this review, July 14, 2012
I'm genuinely humbled by your amazing review of our mansion hotel, our fabulous staff, and the detailed descriptions of all the wonderful activities that Erika, our out-of-this-world concierge, booked for you so you and your husband's visit to Costa Rica was a peak experience. I can sincerely report to you that a review like yours is what motivates all the persons who work for Forest Hills Suites to continue to do our very best to make wonderful and appreciative guests such as you and your husband delighted you were our guests. I'm so pleased to learn that Jan, our booking expert, and Erika, our concierge, made you feel special--because you are!! Any guest at Forest Hills Suites is very special to all of us, and it is our pleasure to prove that we feel that way by showing our guests in every step of their interactions with us just how true that is. Thanks again, and come back soon! Happy trails.
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Magnolia, Delaware
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2012

We stayed at Forest Hills Suites for four nights in March 2012. We were the only people staying there at the time, so it was like we had an entire mansion to ourselves. They even upgraded us to a larger room for free because we were the only guests booked at the time.

The grounds of the hotel are secluded, but it isn't too far out of the way from the main attractions in the Jaco area. Jaco beach is less than a five minute drive from the hotel. We had rented a car, but if you don't have one they can tell you how to get around.

Erika the concierge was very kind and welcoming, and she made sure to show us all the places to see in the area. She showed us some tours we could take and we chose to go to the Island of Tortuga on our last day staying with her. She made all of the arrangements and even paid the company for us. (The tour never happened because Jaco 360 failed to pick us up, but that was through no fault of Erika. You can read my review of Jaco 360 to see what happened there.) Each day when we returned she was always there to see how our day was and make sure we had everything we needed.

Aside from offering us tours, Erika also told us all about the area and the best places to go to see the sunset, the best and least expensive place to get authentic Costa Rican food in Jaco, the location of secluded beaches, how to see animals in the nature reserves without paying tour guides. She wasn't just interested in getting us to spend out money - she wanted to make sure that we had a good time and enjoyed our stay in her country. I really appreciated that.

Breakfast of fresh fruit, juice, coffee and toast was provided each morning - Erika even made sure breakfast was ready early the day we were supposed to go on the tour. At night when Erika was not on site, there was a security guard patrolling the property though it hardly seemed necessary. We were safe as could be in the home, but I appreciated that they went through the trouble to have someone there at all times.

The hotel is beautiful, the grounds are lush, Erika is a perfect hostess. I am so glad we stayed at Forest Hills Suites and I would enthusiastically recommend Forest Hills Suites to anyone. I want to go back myself.

  • Stayed March 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ForestHillsSuites, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Hills Suites, responded to this review, March 22, 2012
Come on back! We’d love to have you stay with us again. Thank you for the thoughtful review and for passing along your kind words about Erika. We are glad you found the location to be convenient and close to the local attractions while providing you with a secluded and safe environment. You’re welcome back anytime. Pura Vida!
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Washington DC, District of Columbia
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2012

You know how when you return from a vacation and you feel desperate for the good vibes to stay with you as you sit in your office and daydream about it? That's how I feel right now as I write this review.

I just returned from a stay at the Forest Hills Suites and must say I left my heart back there. It is the most tranquil and beautiful place I’ve ever stayed in. The ceilings and closets are all constructed of a gorgeous dark wood (which our friend, who is an expert on types of wood, said were really good quality… I wish I’d asked what kind of wood it was!), while the arched windows throughout the house give it an airy and open feeling. The tiled floors throughout the mansion and on the patio in the lush backyard were immaculate, and the maid did an excellent job of making the beds and cleaning up each day.

My favorites parts about staying at FHS were waking up early, sitting on the balcony of our master suite, listening to the tropical birds float around me, admiring the gorgeous flowers all over the back yard, and watching the sun slowly rise above the lush hill facing the house while I ate fresh papaya. I also loved sharing dinner and tropical drinks with friends on the patio by the refreshing pool.

I brought a couple bottles of deet bug spray…. But of course I didn’t use a single drop on this vacation! The bugs didn’t come near us at all when we were at the house, which is amazing because its surroundings are so lush.

The master suite has an incredible brick vaulted and domed brick ceiling—it was like nothing I’d ever seen before, and my husband and I loved to gaze at it (and the dozens of local paintings in the room) as we drifted off to sleep each night. It also has an attached private bathroom with a huge bathtub and overhead shower with perfect water pressure--a rarity in Costa Rica.

Erika, the house manager, did an incredible job with organizing day tours and excursions for us—and she was very fast to respond to any emails we sent her with our millions of pre-trip questions! She is so animated and kind, and she convinced us to take an excursion to Manual Antonio National park—a trip we weren’t planning to make, but that turned out to be our favorite day in Costa Rica. She also organized the following for us, all of which I very highly highly recommend:

1) Villa Caletas for the gorgeous sunset. The grounds of the hotel are amazing and you watch the sunset into the Pacific—just incredible. The interior of the hotel didn’t impress me, and we were all glad we’d booked at FHS instead of spending a lot more money to stay there.
2) Isla Tortuga—an awesome day-long trip to a secluded island, complete with endless drinks and water bottles and lunch served to us by the attentive boat staff.
3) Dinner at the Lemon Zest restaurant—I had excellent ahi tuna there.

Overall, I had an amazing time in Costa Rica and am now considering cancelling our trip to Hawaii next year just so we can return to this amazing home in such a lush and peaceful country. I've traveled to 23 countries and must say Costa Rica now tops my list.

Room Tip: Stay in the master suite!!!! It is an incredible deal and sitting on the balcony in the morning is h...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ForestHillsSuites, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Hills Suites, responded to this review, February 24, 2012
We are delighted to hear that you have left your heart at Forest Hills Suites. We will watch over it until you return! We’re so pleased to hear that you enjoyed the landscape and architecture of our unique, boutique Hotel. We are glad you noticed the water pressure! We spent a lot of time with our plumbers to be certain that our guests received the best bathroom amenities experienced in the best hotels of the world, so we’re pleased you noticed.

We want to thank you for passing along your praise for Erika. We think she’s pretty special too, and we are glad that you enjoyed her recommendations.

Go ahead and cancel your trip to Hawaii! Erika, the tropical birds, the huge bathtub with great shower pressure, the gorgeous sunsets and your heart are all waiting here for you! We’ll keep the lantern lit for your return.
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Washington, District of Columbia, United States
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2012

We had a wonderful stay at Forest Hills Suites. We were a group of 11 and the house was perfect for us. There was enough room for everyone to have their own space, and at the same time large areas for everyone to hang out in together. We especially loved the daily visits from a tucan, the bbq for grilling fresh fish, and the ease of getting to so many beautiful beaches!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • 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.
ForestHillsSuites, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Hills Suites, responded to this review, February 28, 2012
We are glad that your group enjoyed Forest Hills Suites and the BBQ and that you took the time to write a review to share it with us. Thank you for pointing out that Forest Hills Suites works well with groups but still allows space for you to have privacy when you need it. Bet the fish was great! Come back soon, the toucan misses you!
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Strathroy, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2012

We booked this hotel the night before arriving to Costa Rica. It is the most beautiful hotel I have ever seen. They upgraded our room because we were getting married and we had the whole hotel to ourselves. If going to Jaco and looking to relax this is the nicest place to stay. It is peaceful and the host is amazing. She looked after us with no hidden agenda. Stay here!!

  • Stayed February 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ForestHillsSuites, Guest Relations Manager at Forest Hills Suites, responded to this review, February 28, 2012
We are so glad that you picked our boutique Hotel to stay during your wedding! Thank you for your review and for saying it’s the most beautiful hotel you’ve ever seen! We love weddings and feel honored to have shared in your special time. We hope to see you for more rest and relaxation on your first anniversary. Pura Vida!
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Additional Information about Forest Hills Suites

Address: Herradura, Jaco, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Jaco
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 19 B&Bs / Inns in Jaco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Forest Hills Suites 3.5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
WELCOME to Forest Hills Suites. Want to stay in a luxury suite in a real mansion when you're visiting the Jaco area of Costa Rica? Want to pay no more than you would for a normal room at an upscale hotel? Then welcome to Forest Hills Suites! You'll be very pleased that you discovered this hidden jewel. It's tucked away in a private seven acre landscaped garden. We are surrounded by lush, green mountains nestled in the middle of a forest. We are just a stone's throw from the Herradura Shopping Center and Los Suenos Marina Resort. You'll feel amazed at this little jewel when you enter our front gate. Once inside our gate, you'll drive toward your very own boutique suite hotel on its palm-lined and serpentine driveway. Right at that moment, as you get your first live glimpse of Forest Hills Suites, you'll know you made the correct decision. Forest Hills Suites invites you to step into paradise and relax in luxury. Enjoy the hospitality of your own private concierge hosted adventures while hiding out in this opulent estate. You will find this five-suite, one-of-a kind boutique hotel equipped with all the first class amenities that will make your visit one that will create delightful memories. Each suite is equipped with a large-screen TV and Wi-Fi access, so that guests can always be in touch with the world they left behind. After a day of adventure or doing nothing at all, perhaps you'd like to unwind with a soothing massage by the pool? Your private concierge is there to arrange your dream trip, and all you need to do is ask. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Forest Hills Suites Costa Rica/Jaco

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