We started our trip in Arenal, this was the 2nd part of our stay, and then we finished up our vacation in Manuel Antonio. We wanted to stay at a place that was on the ocean but were unfamiliar with the area. We wanted to stay near our final destination of Manuel Antonio and we had heard that Jaco was very busy and touristy. So we decided to find something near Jaco. Esterillos sounded really nice and the reviews I read from others said they liked the area.
The beach was beautiful. There was hardly anyone on the beach and it was great for long walks and finding shells. There were several tidal pool areas where the water was nice to take a dip in without getting pounded by the waves. The surf was really great and there were a few surfers out. (I had read this was a great surfing area, but didn't see quite as many surfers as I thought I would.) My kids enjoyed the beach as well and had fun playing in the surf. We saw macaws several times both on the beach and while driving on the road.
The area around the hotel was very poor and rural and there was only 1-2 restaurants in walking distance of the hotel. The food was pretty good and the service was good, but for the 2 days we were in Esterillos, there wasn't much variety in the restaurants.
The hotel itself was a small 6-apartment unit. The rooms were pretty small, but at least they had a small kitchen with a sink, refrigerator, and pull out couch for the kids. They had a pool as well. It wasn't very big, but the kids enjoyed it. The breakfast each day was very good. It consisted of different items every day. One day we had eggs, sausage, and toast, along with coffee, and the other day we had beans and rice and fresh fruit.
The cost I thought was a little high per night at $70, based on what we got. There was little in the way of amenities, with the exception of the daily breakfast. There was only 1-2 other guests staying at the hotel at the same time as we were there and hey mostly kept to themselves. Like in the other reviews I read, if you're looking for a place to stay where you can stay "cheap" and surf, this is for you. Otherwise you may be a little disappointed with the spartan accommodations.
Overall, if I had a choice to stay here again, I wouldn't. It was OK at best and there certainly wasn't much to do in the area. The saving grace for us was that we knew we would be staying at a much nicer place when we arrived in Manuel Antonio. And for $70/night, I thought it was a little overpriced. I would think somewhere along the lines of $40-50/night max would be more appropriate.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Hotel "La Dolce Vita" is located on the beach in Esterillos Oeste, Jaco, facing the shore of the Pacific Ocean. The Hotel, with its seven apartments facing a wonderful garden, is a new, first class construction building offering all comforts. Each apartment has patio/deck, terrazzo-balcony and is smartly furnished, bathroom with hot water, air conditioning, fan, kitchen, fridge with up to 4 beds. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- La Dolce Vita Jaco
- La Dolce Vita Costa Rica/Jaco