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“Mixed Feelings” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Moana

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Hotel Moana
Mal Pais, Mal Pais 0000, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #4 of 10 hotels in Mal Pais
Tamarindo, Costa Rica
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Mixed Feelings”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 17, 2013

We had a good time here, but some things could have been better. The room was nicely decorated and the hotel is very original and well designed, but the pool was a bit dirty and it was a shame that the restaurant was closed (but that's low season for you) as the location is a bit far from the main town.

This place does have amazing views and we saw lots of wildlife and sunsets, but also completely attacked by mosquitoes, I think mosquito nets on the windows would be good. Also the bathroom door didn't close.

Friendly and helpful staff, but a LOT of steps, this is not a good place to come if you are not very fit or handicapped, as you will not be able to go up for breakfast. I wouldn't go back to this hotel I don't think, but I can see why other people really liked it.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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309 people have reviewed this hotel

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (51)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Haarlem, The Netherlands
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2013

Let me start by saying that we are very used to travel and have stayed in many different countries, hotels and b&b's. Since we would arrive a bit later in the day in Mal Pais, we decided to arrange a place to stay in advance through Booking.com for 2 nights. The surroundings and the grounds of the hotel look very good, the pool is amazing and the views from the restaurant are awesome. Now for the bad news: it was a bit disappointing that there were only double beds available. For a place with supposedly this much class, a queen bed would be so much better. We stayed in a building with 4 rooms. Even though our neighbours were not very loud, we could hear everything they were doing and saying. The beds consisted of some kind of plastic matrass cover which makes sure you have a very sweaty night. The restaurant was closed, even though the hotel was fully booked. But the worst part was our arrival. A very cranky guy showed us our room. No personal touch, no information, not even saying where the breakfast was served and at what time. We had never experienced such a welcome in our 2.5 weeks in Costa Rica. All and all, for a hotel that looks as good as it does, it was a disappointing stay...

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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London
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

We just spent 3 nights here and it was brilliant. The staff were extremely helpful and attentive. The rooms are great. It would have to be one of the better places in town by far and would highly recommended it. And there's the food which is an added bonus. Awesome restaurant with a great view with amazing tapas at a good price. So good we ate there three nights in a row. Why go anywhere else. Go and enjoy!!!

  • Stayed May 2013, 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
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Seattle
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2013

Adan and Vicki have created an amazing, quiet spot. Great views, great service. The monkey family is wonderful as they entertain in the trees. It sits up high with great views and breeze. Wonderful breakfast is included and the pool is wonderful. Toucan 2 Junior Suite is special, private. Outdoor shower, deck and staff are great. The Papaya restaurant is outstanding with best view in area. The civeche was great as are the salads. They connected us with Ruth for a massage. She is extraordinary!

Room Tip: Extra for the upper rooms is worth it but all are great value.
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  • Stayed April 2013, 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2013

After a long study of all the hotels in Mal Pais and the visit to many of them, I can say that Moana can be considered as one of the best.
Advantages:
1. Perfect location for those with car.
Moana is situated a little bit up, on a hill which gives it a prerogative not to be covered by dust that Mal Pais is famous for. The nearest beach is about 2 km away so it's really important to have a car as the road is again-very dusty and unpleasant to walk.
2. The restaurant is outstanding.
I've visited many good restaurants on the coast like Nectar of Flor Blanca hotel, Brisas del Mar, Habanero etc. but Papaya Lounge from Moana stays the best. It has a fantastic view, delicious cuisine, first class service and relaxing atmosphere.
3. The rooms.
I've stayed at Deluxe room which was nice and simple. Decorated in african style, very comfortable big bad and always clean. No bugs, no spiders, no nothing scary that I was so afraid of to see crowling on my leg at night.
4. The staff.
The owners are very welcoming and helpful. The room service girls are always smiling and whatever problem you have they'll try to help you
5. The atmosphere.
As the hotel in pretty far from the center it's quite and relaxing.

Disadvantages:
A little far from the beach and the center which is nothing if you have a car.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2013

Have just returned from a three week stay in Costa Rica, most of it spent in this lovely hotel. The room was spacious, spotlessly clean and comfortable. It is set back from the very dusty road, on the hillside and although it is a steep climb up to the restaurant it is worth the trip - both for the food and the view. The breakfasts are very good - we found we didn't need to eat lunch very often and we enjoyed the dinners we had too. All the food is well prepared and beautifully presented, prices are reasonable. The owners, Aidan & Vicki are always at hand and they were both very helpful to us as we had a family medical emergency, they couldn't have done more for us and it was much appreciated. We had to leave very early in the morning on our last day and Aidan very thoughtfully left juice boxes and granola bars for our journey as we departed before breakfast. All the staff were pleasant and helpful and keep the hotel and it's luxurious gardens in immaculate condition. Definitely the place to stay in the Mal Pais area.

Room Tip: Older, less mobile guests may prefer a room on the lower levels near the pool, if you don't min...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Charleston, South Carolina
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 18, 2013

If you are looking for a laid back but still elegent atmosphere this is your place. The lodges are spaced out well & are surrounded by trees & vegetation. The restaurant, Papaya Lounge, attached has both amazing sunset views & food. Monkeys playing in the trees above the pool. Everything was great. Friendly staff.

  • Stayed February 2013, 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 Moana

Address: Mal Pais, Mal Pais 0000, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Mal Pais
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#3 Family Hotel in Mal Pais
#4 Romantic Hotel in Mal Pais
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hotel Moana is a small luxurious ocean view hotel nestled amongst a rich backdrop of wildlife and jungle. Inspired by Africa for its choice of décor, the beautiful rooms offer tranquility and comfort to all of our guests. Enjoy being served breakfast while you gaze out over the Pacific Ocean. Later hang out at the wonderful pool area and fall asleep on a suspended day bed while the waves crash in the background, paradise awaits! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Moana Hotel Mal Pais
Hotel Moana Costa Rica/Mal Pais

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