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“Good Beachfront Hotel” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Cocal & Casino

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Hotel Cocal & Casino
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Calle El Cocal, Jaco, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #26 of 42 Hotels in Jaco
Redondo Beach, California
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Good Beachfront Hotel”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2013

This is a great hotel - for the single person but due to it's pool bar being 'Party Central' in Jaco, I wouldn't recommend it for families. Nice but strange pool - 2 skinny but long twin pools and a nice bar. The restaurant downstairs is adequate but for a little extra money the Dinner house upstairs is well worth visiting. Best part is the beachfront ocean view.

Room Tip: the cheaper rooms in the parking lot area are a lot quieter than the poolside rooms which are in the...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled solo
    • 3 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
    • 4 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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92 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    24
    30
    17
    10
    11
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7
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4
Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (26)
Date | Rating
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  • German first
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English first
San Rafael De Heredia
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2013

Over the last year, I have taken many of men and even some couples to this establishment through my tour company. I got the pleasure and opportunity the other day to stay there for a night. I know what goes on there but wanted to experience the hotel for myself. The Cocal does a good job overall. The rooms are clean and modern. It has everything you need. The staff is friendly and courteous. It's a great value. Just keep in mind that this place is not a family hotel. It is filled with predominately male travelers, if you catch my drift. Best nights by far are Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. Free breakfast. It is mandatory that you check this place out if you are the male traveler and are going to Jaco.

Room Tip: If you want to get away from the noise, get a Jr. Suite. If you have 2+3 guys, Check out the condos...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • 4 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
    • 4 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.
Lakeland, Florida
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2013

The Cocal is actually a beautiful property with nice rooms and an amazing view right on the Pacific Ocean. I had an ocean front room which was amazing. Although the pool area is loud until about midnight if you are away from the pool that is not an issue really. What I found amazing was the lack of decent service and the total lack of any leadership at all. Even when I asked for a manager I was told there isn't one.

On our first day we got some food at the restaurant, which was very good, however they let the dirty dishes sit on the table outside for a full day even though several of the staff were standing nearby all day. Nobody had the initiative to clean. The staff arrived every day at 6am. I know what time they arrived because they would stand over at the restaurant area drinking coffee and talking loudly enough to wake us up every day.

On Thursday I was the only one at the bar in the casino. There was soccer on one TV and the PGA first round on another. The sound was on for soccer. I asked one of the 2 girls working there to pelase switch the sound to the golf. I was just told no. I asked to change the channel of the TV with sound to the golf and was again told no. Also, if I wanted t a Coke I was told to go outside to that bar for one.

When I went to the front desk to see if I could get my floor swept in the room they just handed me a broom. I swept the room however one of the 4 people standing there could have offered to clean. I was the guest after all.

There is absolutely no smoking anywhere on their property, even if I was the only one outside I couldn't have a cigar out there and was directed to a smoking area which was a small paved spot about 3 feet by 10 feet just off property. If you like to have a good cigar and watch the sunset I would recommend a different place to stay.

The food at the restaurant was excellent and the view breathtaking. Getting somebody to wait on you at the restaurant was the only challenge. Once again hard to understand since we were the only ones eating there at the time.

It was clear to see what impact the complete lack of leadership, training or accountability has on that operation. With just a little bit of friendly service this place would be a jewel of a location for vacation. As it is I will be more careful next time I go to find someplace that is not just cigar friendly but just plain friendly and polite. This is such a waste of a great hotel and location. A manager or leader who cared would make all the difference in the world here.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
James G, Owner at Hotel Cocal & Casino, responded to this review, September 9, 2013
Our sincere apologies for your bad experience at our hotel. While we try, sometimes our staff becomes overwhelmed due to the volume of clients we have at our hotel. Especially our bar and restaurant areas. Should you have any further issues or concerns, please don't hesitate to email them to info@hotelcocal.com. Again, we apologize.
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Houston, Texas, United States
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

This hotel has very nice rooms and an awesome set of pools. It is also located directly on the beach. At night it turns into a brothel there were seriously like 300 hookers. I didn't check out the Casino but I saw several games of Texas Hold Em going on when I was walking through the Corridor to the Pool.

Room Tip: Don't get a room facing the pool if you want to sleep.
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  • Stayed June 2013, 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
    • 3 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.
Baltimore
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2013

I must say as a solo male traveler this is the place to stay. I must also say I highly recommend room number 5 or 7. These rooms face the ocean, but they are last rooms on the property. The rooms face the right side of the property. Its almost like you have your own private back yard facing the ocean. Room5 has two queen size beds, AC, hot water, and great water pressure. I recommend room #5 because it is the only room where you can get some rest if you do not want to be bothered with early evening activities on the resort. Yes the resort gets live around 5:30pm. You can get some rest and then start your activities...... You cant go wrong!!!!!!!! Have fun!!!!!!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled solo
    • 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
38 reviews 38 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2013

I am not sure where to begin with the Cocal beach resort, but let me first say this. DO NOT STAY HERE UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES! Out of all of the hotels in over 30 countries I have been to, THIS IS THE WORST HOTEL IN THE WORLD. Management is unavailable at most times of the day. I believe the general managers name is Alan, I had asked to speak with him many times but whenever I ask for him he is out at lunch, running errands, taking his fourth day off of the week, etc. The staff told me the best way to reach him is by email. Yes, the general manager of the hotel is never around and if you want to speak with him, email him. Even better is the night manager who's name is carlos. Ive actually met him. You can spot him pretty easily, he is drunk most of the day drinking at the bar while flirting with the bartenders, smoking cigarettes on the beach, or hanging out in the casino. I asked to speak to him the first day I arrived because I had paid for two beach front rooms and I the rooms didn't have WIFI. I asked to be moved to another room that had WIFI and he told me that WIFI was only available around the pool and that NO room had WIFI access. I asked how is this possible and he yelled at me said he had other things to deal with and walked away. The front desk clerk apologized for his behavior and said this is how Carlos always acts. He went on to tell me that the American owner is always in the USA so management knows they can do whatever they want. That is the general theme of the resort, it's the inmates running the asylum, because there is no accountability. If you show up for the free breakfast you maybe waiting awhile, because nobody is watching the waiters to make sure the tables are being served. If you are at the bar trying to get a drink you also might wait half an hour because the night time manager is busy talking to the staff. Ive never been to an insane asylum or a prison, but I think that Cocal Resort provided me with a pretty good idea of what goes on in those types of places. Inmates running the asylum is a gross understatement for what goes on at this resort. The tour desk located in front of the resort is the one good thing about Cocal. They are a separate company and are really friendly and helpful for setting up tours and providing information about the area. I spoke with them about my problems at the resort and they said that many other guests had problems as well. I feel bad that they had to run a tour company at such a terrible resort. But that's what cocal is, the worst hotel/ in the world. I wouldn't recommend this resort to my worst enemy. On top of it all, I realized that the hotel charged my credit card for charges I did not authorize. DO NOT STAY HERE. You will regret it

Room Tip: Stay at another hotel!
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled solo
    • 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 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, Ca
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
109 helpful votes 109 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 10, 2013 via mobile

My husband and I came here and we were stunned and could not leave fast enough. By 9pm it was filled with prostitutes coming in by cab and filling the pool area. It was truly surprising and I feel like this needs to be clearly stated here and to anyone choosing to come here. I know that there are men who will choose this location for this activity but a lot of us who consult trip advisor are not looking for recommendations on prostitution. This should be clearly stated on the website and all places looking for upstanding establishments to visit. Several reviews state this is not a family hotel but that is not near clear enough. We came with no idea what we were in for and couldn't leave fast enough.

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
James G, Owner at Hotel Cocal & Casino, responded to this review, October 1, 2013
We apologize for your unpleasant experience at our hotel. Our hotel is inclusive to all lifestyles without discrimination. Our business is selling rooms, food, beverages, and entertainment in our casino. That's it. What our guests choose to do, as long as it is within Costa Rican law, is their business. We do not participate in any commercial interest beyond our core business of rooms, food, beverages, and gaming. We neither condone or condemn the legal and respectful behavior some of our guests choose to engage in. Again, sorry you were not happy with your stay.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Cocal & Casino

Address: Calle El Cocal, Jaco, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Jaco
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#16 On the Beach Hotel in Jaco
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 43
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
At Hotel Cocal and Casino, we know the importance of understanding the needs of our guests and we make every effort to insure your stay with us is a memorable one. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hotel Cocal Jaco
Hotel Cocal And Casino
Hotel El Cocal
El Cocal Hotel
Hotel Cocal & Casino Costa Rica/Jaco

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