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“A week in the Jungle” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Jungle Villa

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Jungle Villa
| Pacific Canyon Drive 1, Manuel Antonio National Park 6350, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Minneapolis
Level Contributor
90 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
“A week in the Jungle”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 14, 2013

Seven of us stayed here ( Friends, kids and grandma) for a week recently. The owner of the home was there when we arrived and we had a nice conversation. We had nightly security and daily maid service... super nice. We found out that the place used to be a restaurant. The pool was amazing, the monkeys were amazing and we never saw a bug... and we WANTED to!
The beds were comfy and not like in Mexico... rooms stayed cool and the breeze from the ocean was perfect.
My only words of caution are that if you can not tolerate stairs and hills don't come. My mom had a tough , tough time... did not bother us at all but she struggled.
The boys loved that the casino was across the street and visited on Super Bowl evening.. how many times can you watch the super bowl in a foreign country.
There were pleanty of pots and pans for cooking, plenty of bottled water and PLENTY of outside space that no one got in each others way.
Being from MN we are used to going up north to cabins and I felt like I was at a cabin in the jungle... The owner was right.. if you want 5 star service and marble floors etc.. don't come here.. if you want to be comfortable and have a relaxed time.. this is the place for you.
Thanks for a comfortable week!

Room Tip: Rent the entire villa.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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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29 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (8)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Grinnell, Iowa, United States
Level Contributor
16 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2012

A group of college kids (13 of us!) studying abroad needed a nice place to stay for our week off, and we stumbled upon the Jungle Villa website online. We got great vibes from Ad and decided to book it, and it turned out being pretty cheap for all of us.

The Villa was great, we all cooked in the kitchen each day and lounged in the open air living room with hammocks and couches. The pool was wonderful and was cleaned daily as leaves accumulate during the rainy season. The villa's view of the ocean was gorgeous. When we wanted to go out, everything was within walking distance. There are tons of restaurants very close-by, a very nice supermarket (stocked with american imports) that you can either take the bus to or walk to in about ten minutes, and the bus that takes you down to the beach and national park leaves just 100m from the villa. The national park is a must-see! It boasts one of the most gorgeous little beaches and we saw tons of monkeys when we visited.

The monkeys were by far my favorite part. We had a troupe of squirrel monkeys come multiple times and a lone white-faced monkey showed up a few times as well. Make sure you don't let them come in the living area room because they get really excited and poo on the floor.

There are just a few things that weren't working but they didn't end up bothering us at all. The oven's baking part doesn't work, but there's a convection oven that you can use instead. Also, the water for showering isn't really hot, but it's also not cold. There's a definite difference between the hot water and the cold water, but be aware that it's not hot. However, it never really gets that cold here so the showers were refreshing.

Room Tip: All the rooms were pretty great, but the upstairs seems to be a nicer place to stay if you're tr...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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.
Charlotte, North Carolina
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2012

The owner of this villa was so rude during check-in for the week we had booked in February that we opted not to stay there after all. His behavior was upsetting enough that we wasted a large chunk of our vacation time - as well as significant money - finding alternate lodging for our 11-person extended family group. Since this happened, the owner has refused to communicate or acknowledge any of my many messages and attempts to discuss this problem. He has not responded at all. This contrasts to his friendly and prompt replies to all my queries during the year prior to our trip, when he was collecting my thousands of dollars for the prepaid rental fee.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
margaritacr, Owner at Jungle Villa, responded to this review, May 10, 2012
This party never stayed in the villa.
No villa owner in Manuel Antonio, in Costa Rica or anywhere else in the World will give a refund if guests don't show up on the day of their planned arrival and check-in.

A few hours before the official check-in time a young woman, apparently a daughter of the party's contact person, came to the villa for a tour of the villa. Our staff gave her a tour of this beautiful villa but during the tour she hardly listened to what the staff told her.

She was texting contineously during our tour. When one of our staff members told her this texting was not very polite, she became very upset and left the villa immediately.

Our staff waited for the party that day and the following days but we never heard or saw them during their week-long stay in Costa Rica.

After their return to the States they asked for a full refund although the villa was held available for them the entire week. Nobody else stayed in the villa that week.
No villa owner will give any refund under these circumstances.

Apparently these persons consider it to be rude if you ask them nicely to stop texting because it's not polite to text while you are given a private tour of a villa.

I also have a lovely daughter but if she is upset for whatever reason like in this case, I would pickup the phone or visit the villa and find out what happened and to hear the story from both sides. No idea what the daughter told her mother but our staff treated the daughter at every moment respectfully and our staff was correct to her every single moment she was in the villa.

We never saw any person of this party except the daughter who was given a tour. We never saw her mother who wrote this review and a check-in never took place. The daughter was in the villa for 20 minutes.
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San Jose, California
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 1, 2012

3 families (12 people) including 6 kids from 8-15 years old needed a place to stay and we luckily chose Jungle Villa! We had a big range of travel needs (I can sleep in the dirt and be happy and some of the other travelers like 5-star rated resorts!) We all LOVED Jungle Villa!

Marta and Jason were there during the day and there was also security at night. They took great care of us and any needs we had - I am sure Marta rolled her eyes a few times but was always patient with our requests!

The layout of the house was great for the 3 families.

The upstairs had 2 rooms - we put 5 boys in one that had a queen and two twin beds and my husband and I stayed in the other master bedroom. It also had another queen bed in it but it wasn't used.

The downstairs had 3 rooms. One was very large and could be made private by locking a couple of adjoining doors. The second was a room in the middle and it was partially open to the 3rd bedroom so didn't offer much privacy. The 3rd "room" was quite small with a bunk bed in it and a bathroom. We put the 2 girls in that room and while it was adequate they felt a bit isolated from everyone at night and didn't like how dark it was. But overall, the layout worked for everyone.

The main living area and pool were what really make this place amazing. We could all be together but be able to get away a bit too. The pool was great for all of us, but the kids especially loved it.

I loved staying at a house where I didn't have to worry if the floor got wet from the kids coming in to get food after getting out of the pool or worry about something getting broken...this house is made for families.

We cooked many meals and the fully stocked kitchen had everything we needed.

Because it is right between Quepos and Manuel Antonio it was easy to shop, get to the beach or just walk up the road to get something to eat or drink. Some might be looking for something right on the beach but being a bit removed from it allowed for an amazing breeze in the afternoon and felt very safe.

The website is clear - if you have an issue with bugs, a bit of wildlife hanging out with you, etc. it might not be the best choice for you - but you would be missing out on a great experience overall by not staying here. We had frogs in the pool at night, monkeys and geckos hanging out in the house (but never were they aggressive or scary), some big bugs walking around but it never was enough to bother anyone - it was actually pretty neat. We also had a sloth hanging out right above the house for a few days...

We definitely plan to go back to Costa Rica next year and will make Jungle Villa our home base again!

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
tucson
Level Contributor
15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2012

We thoroughly enjoyed staying here for 3 nights although we did have some issues. The toilet in our room did not work and wasn't fixed during our stay. Luckily the adjoining unit was empty and we could use that bathroom. The other issue we had was that Ed was smoking cigars the first day we were there and one night he fed the monkeys in the dining area so he could take a video. There were at least 20 monkeys in the room! I would much rather see a few in the trees and a few coming down to the railing. I also don't think it is wise to feed wild animals.
The room we were in was downstairs, large and bright with a large bathroom and plenty of towels. The adjoining unit was not as inviting. Decor was funky - lots of stuff! The room could have used a paint job and less knick knacks but the bed was comfortable and the ac was nice. The first night we didn't use the ac and had the windows open but the howler monkeys were so loud at 5am, we decided to close the windows. The upstairs main room and kitchen were to die for. The view was gorgeous and the wildlife was entertaining. We cooked one night and fixed breakfast every morning.
The location is right between Quepos and Manuel Antonio and an easy walk to the bus.
There was only 1 other person there the first night and we were the only ones there for 2 nights so we had the whole villa to ourselves! It is a great place to stay if you are not too fussy and certainly a good value.

Room Tip: We only saw our room and the adjoining rooms downstairs. The first room down stairs is the better ch...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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margaritacr, Owner at Jungle Villa, responded to this review, March 28, 2012
This couple had the entire lower-level Jungle Suite at their disposal which includes 3 bathrooms. So we don't see why one bathroom not 100% working should be any problem.

Monkeys coming to the villa are not trained and live in the wild. So it's impossible for the villa's staff to tell half the monkeys to stay in the trees, and to tell the other half to come down to the villa for our guests. Our monkeys simply don't listen :-(

Feeding bananas to the monkeys is no problem as long as you don't peel the bananas and use fork and knife to cut the banana in small pieces. Make sure they don't get any human bacteries. Let the monkeys take the banana pieces from a plastic plate. Don't use your hands to feed them.

When monkeys visit the villa most guests take their photo or video camera.
Monkeys don't come if you take your camera and wait for them. Just grab your camera quickly when you see or hear them coming.

These guests rented just 1 room in the villa, not the entire villa. In these cases you have to accept other guests with their habits. Smoking is allowed in the villa outside the bedrooms and bathrooms because the open living area has an almost constant breeze from the ocean.

Before anyone comes to this villa, they must read our page which clearly explains for which type of guests the jungle villa is the perfect location. If you want to stay close to the living jungle our villa is a great location. If you want to stay in rooms which remind you of your hometown Marriott hotel, our villa is defenitely not the right place for you. And yes, if the US culture and lifestyle is your Gold standard, some of our rooms may look a little funky for you.

Individual rooms in the Jungle Villa are made available for rent if we did not rent the entire villa to one big party. Individual rooms are only available within 4 to 6 weeks before arrival.
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Winter Park, Colorado
Level Contributor
14 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 18, 2011

We stayed here for a week in August. We had a party of eight so we rented the entire villa out. First of all let me say, Margarita, the owner is a lovely person and a wonderful host but she lives in San Jose and at the time of our visit, had not been to the property in some time. I am not at all a picky person (do all picky people say that?) BUT that having been said, the villa needed a good scouring. There was dust on everything, thick thick dust and grease. The dishwasher in the open aired kitchen was broken and it fell open and dishes came tumbling out and broke all over the floor. When we mentioned to Marta the housekeeper, she just shrugged. The bathrooms continuously overflowed and by the end of the week we had one working bathroom (and no one had flushed anything down them that should not be flushed). The upstairs basically has two large bedrooms that are chopped up to make sleeping areas. The first bedroom is very dark and has a double bed and then this wierd partition (like from an office cublicle) and behind it a queen sized bed, There is a small bathroom off of that. The next bedroon is large and has a king sized bed and then a waist high wall and two twin beds. This room has a huge bathroon that is really pretty. We did see several tarantulas and a GIANT horse spider in that bathroom. Some tarantulas came out of the drain in the bathroom ......ewwwww....the downstairs was dark and had several sleeping areas. It had a strong mildew smell.
The swimming pools were great! My kids loved playing in all three of them and they had a waterfall that flowed from one to another. Lovely! Jason would come and turn the waterfall on each morning. He also pointed out where sloths were and other animals. We found a small boa on the patio downstairs and he held it for us to llok at. Very cool!
Monkeys did come through the house from time to time and they liked to swing from the rafters, very cool. There was one male mono congo who hung out solo in a tree right off of the main area that was funny (and loud). There were tons of cara blancas and even some titis that would hang around in the early AM and the late afternoon.
Overall, this was an okay property. It is obviously an old hotel that has been turned in to a home. It is not by any means luxury but the price reflects that. My main problem with the property was that it had not been maintained well. Dust and grime we thick everywhere, the chains that held the lights above the dining table were coated with what looked like 3 inches of cooking grease. All of the hanging ornaments (of which there are dozens) are coated in dust and spider webs. Furniture is broken (the bamboo rotted and falling apart) and the rooms are dark.
When we returned to Margarita's bed and breakfast near the airport we let her know about the condition of Jungle Villa and she was really receptive. She said she was going to go there in Oct. and do much needed upkeep. So, maybe by the time you go it will be done.
The location is nice and on the bus line.The pools need to be painted again but are wonderful:)

Room Tip: Stay upstairs in the big room if possible.
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  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
margaritacr, Owner at Jungle Villa, responded to this review, September 27, 2011
Apparently these guests didn't realize that the name JungleVilla means
a villa surrounded by real jungle, real trees, animals and insects.

This villa is the only Manuel Antonio villa which has full-day maid service.
It is cleaned twice a day because the huge living space has no walls,
windows or doors and has a constant ocean breeze. Of course there may have
been some dust somewhere in such a location, but "thick, thick" seems very
exaggerated. The same applies for "3 inches of cooking grease" on the light
chains: these are 2 chains not 1 chain !!

We try to keep all bedrooms as dark as possible during daytime to keep them cool.

Our guests don't have to clean the dishes; that's done by our housekeeper.
I am sorry these guests were not informed about this service.

This unique villa is for tourists who love nature, the Costa Rica jungle and
animals. Its great location allows you to be part of nature.
The villa is very comfortable and very private.
For 5-star luxury we recommend our great local hotels.
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Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
28 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2010

This property is also reviewed here on Trip Advisor as "Oceanview Jungle Villa, 3 pools, visiting monkeys". The place is amazing, especially for the price. One of the local guides told me that it used to be the outdoor restaurant and pools for the hotel above this property, which explains the unique layout. You go through two gates down a long, landscaped pathway to reach this HUGE open-air living space (the web site says 4000 sq ft and I believe it). There's a central kitchen just packed with dishes and cooking supplies that is all for the use of the guests there, and tons of separate little sitting areas... the TV area, the pool viewing area, the bar stools, couch seating, hammock, and several eating tables, one huge. To the left are the three pools (it's so hard to believe you get these huge pools just for the house!!) and straight ahead is the jungle and ocean view. On the right hand side of the building and down below are the guest rooms.

The property looks like it used to be swanky and is now maintained enough to be a fair priced house rental. Don't go here if you want pristine... the pools have some tiles missing, the pool furniture is well weathered, the decor is funky, fun... it makes everything feel comfortable. Amazing place for a party. Tons of space to spread out. We were two families there, four adults and three kids. The kids lived in the pool and it was great because you could watch them the whole time. We felt like kings and queens with this whole huge property to ourselves (most of the time). The wildlife viewing was amazing. We were indeed invaded by both capuchin and the endangered squirrel monkeys. We also saw a troupe of howlers with babies. We saw sloths, lizards, a chestnut billed toucan and more.

Definitely select the upstairs rooms if available. Also a funky cool layout, it was great for our two families. There space can be divided in two with a shut door, and each side has a full bath. The larger side had a king bed, and then a half wall dividing off a section with two twin beds. There was a crib too if you needed it. Ceiling fans, lots of windows but overall a bit dark, tile floor, long curtains... kind of a Spanish feel. I liked it. The smaller side is again divided with the partial walls, and has two full beds. One funny feature is that the bathrooms only have swinging saloon doors. They lock I think but don't go all the way to the floor. The smaller side's door has an etched topless woman in it. Cheesy, not tasteless, but our young boys (and Dads) thought that was pretty interesting. Again, funky fun decor.

We did a walkthrough downstairs and it reminded me a bit of a college dorm. There are like 4 bathrooms and 5 or so sleeping rooms down there? Some really hodge podge furniture and some kitchenette features. Still, I would stay down there if upstairs were full because we were almost never inside. The upstairs living areas and kitchen are shared, as are the pools. When we were there a couple came and stayed downstairs. I thought that would be weird but the space was so big it was easy and comfortable. It might not be great if the other people were big partyers and you weren't, or something like that.

Speaking of big partyers, the one thing that surprised me is how in the middle of it the location was. It's just below a very popular bar and restaurant, so there was a bit of noise when going to bed but it wasn't bad. The location is a couple of doors down from Si Como No resort, tons of restaurants walking distance. The grocery store is also walking distance, but a bit long. The bus to the beach is super easy to catch and cheap.

Oh, and there are staff always on the property, two during the day one at night, for security, cleaning and advice. I think the property has room keys but they told us not to bother using them. We did put our computers and stuff in the small safe when we left, but they seemed to think that wasn't even necessary. Mostly they stayed out of the way, but were friendly and helpful when needed.

Overall, Manuel Antonio was our least favorite place to visit in Costa Rica because it was SOOOOOoo crowded. In the park there were three guides and 40 tourists to every one lizard. The restaurant above the house felt like you might as well be in Southern California. Just packed with Americans. The wildlife viewing was absolutely like no where else, and the beach was good, but not the best. If you want to go there, this house is ABSOLUTELY the place to stay!

  • Stayed November 2010, 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
    • 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.
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Additional Information about Jungle Villa

Address: | Pacific Canyon Drive 1, Manuel Antonio National Park 6350, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio National Park
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #21 of 28 Specialty Lodging in Manuel Antonio National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Very private rooms in a great villa in Manuel Antonio with ocean and jungle view, visiting monkeys, 3 pools, airconditioning, wifi, cable tv, 4 rooms, 2 staff.Paradise resort in the heart of Manuel Antonio where Ocean, Jungle and Western comfort meet. Truly the Pearl of Manuel Antonio. You love nature, you like to wake up with the sound of the monkeys in the trees around the house and with the smell of fresh coffee. You like to hear the sound of the jungle and its many inhabitants. This is the only villa in Manuel Antonio with 2 full-time staff members in daytime to maintain the villa and pool area and to keep it clean. If you love pure nature, this villa is the perfect place for you. You will never live and sleep closer to Mother Nature than in the great Jungle Villa. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Jungle Villa Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio National Park

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