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“Callous Management; Dangerous Spa” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel Si Como No

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Hotel Si Como No
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   Manuel Antonio, Quepos, Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica   |  
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Los Angeles
1 review
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Callous Management; Dangerous Spa”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed November 29, 2006

I cannot recommend this hotel; they ruined our trip to Costa Rica. The owner and management care only about their rooms, pools and views and nothing about the safety or comfort of their guests. They allowed my wife to be assaulted under the guise of a massage at the onsite Serenity Spa without consequence to the perpetrator. The owner ignored us completely. Neither he nor his management was horrified or apologetic. Instead they were callous and unsympathetic; making it clear they preferred us to leave and had no intention of addressing, much less redressing our injuries or of punishing the offender. According to the manager, the employees are untouchable and can behave outrageously or steal with little or no consequences (So why bother? Why care? Why are you in the hotel business you uncaring monsters). The Spa (all Costa Rican spas) is unlicensed and the therapist a poorly trained molester, apparently unaccountable to anyone but himself. To top off our stay in the honeymoon suite (no effort at creating any atmosphere of romance at this place) the staff was inconsiderate, loud early in the morning and throughout the day and rude when asked to turn off or relocate their high pressure water hoses. Do yourself a favor do not stay at this hotel; and do not go to a spa in Costa Rica (fired employees just move on to the next location without consequence).

  • Liked — The views and pools
  • Disliked — The uncaring mangement and the terrible spa service
  • Tips/Secrets — Do not go to a Costa Rican spa
  • Stayed November 2006, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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759 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (166)
Date | Rating
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English first
NJ/NY
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2006

Ensconced in a lush hillside of jungle greenery, this place had a killer view of the Pacific, great helpful staff, nice rooms, great pools (with swim up bars), pretty good restaurants, and you would never know that you were just a few feet from a series of tacky tourista hotels on the way to manuel antonio, which had a nice beach and some cool wildlife, but is not nearly as wild as you would like. A sloth was hanging on the railing at the gift shop next store. That was very cool. The hotel is very romantic and it was very quiet when we were there, at the tail end of the rainy season. Kudos to the owner for making it so enviro friendly. They also have another hotel north of San Ramon in the Los Angeles cloud forest that is equallty quality and dedicated to service

  • Liked — view, cleanliness, friendliness
  • Disliked — hard to figure it the place it was like a maze
  • Stayed October 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winnipeg, Manitoba
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2006

We spent many hours searching reviews and reading info before finally selecting Hotel Si Como No. Our decision was difficult as our vacation was only 7 days and we did not want to drive all over the country spending little bits of time in many places. Ultimately we selected the Quepos area regardless of it being the "green season" in a wetter part of the country, and we were very happy with our decision.

We opted for a hotel shuttle to and from the hotel from San Jose rather than rent a car or take a domestic flight. Weight limits on baggage made flying impossible. The road to the hotel is narrow
and winding, so we were pleased to sit back and ride with Antonio, the hotel driver. Antonio proved to be a very safe driver on a road prone to many accidents. During the 3-hour drive,
Antonio also proved to be a patient tutor for my Spanish. A rest stop at the Coffee Plantation near Atenas (about half way to the hotel) offered us a stunning vista from the hills to the ocean and
misty valleys in between. Exciting moments included a stop to watch crocodiles in a major river and a river crossing over what the Ticos call the “Oh My God Bridge,” one of several one-lane
bridges near Parrita.

We made our reservation directly through the hotel and the staff answered our many questions and email usually within an hour. When we arrived at the hotel, check-in was friendly and quick,
and we felt like the staff were long-time friends because of our many pre-visit messages. I cannot name all the individuals, but the entire staff was superb. Grounds keepers, housekeeping,
restaurant workers, front desk....all made us feel like we were sharing their home, not just another guest in a hotel for a week. Of note, Karla arranged a basket of tropical flowers as a surprise for my wife’s birthday and they were stunning. We found the hotel very romantic and how a previous reviewer considered it otherwise is beyond us.

Our room was #17 located in building 12 and was spotless. From our balcony, we had an endless view over the valley to the ocean and off-shore islands. Regular visitors included a tree frog, titi monkeys, an iguana, humming birds, and other jungle critters. We had the occasional ant but encountered few mosquitos and other flying insects. We found some reviewers complaints of bugs in Costa Rica, but this is the jungle after all. We recommend a product called Cactus Juice for mosquitos as it is a non-Deet product, effective and non-toxic. The sounds of howler monkeys woke us in the morning starting about 5AM, and the area is filled with other jungle sounds of birds and geckos. We were able to hear live music played in the restaurants, but it was never disturbing. We were down the hill away from the road so we experienced no traffic noise. The room included an iron, ironing board, hair dryer, safe, coffee maker, toaster oven, A/C, ceiling fans, kitchenette, and full-sized refrigerator stocked with beverages. The large shower in the bathroom included a dispenser for shampoo, conditioner and bath gel. There was no TV but we had no desire to watch a program during our visit and this was a positive for us. We did not even go to the THX movie theater on the property.

Of restaurants, those on property were excellent. We did go to the El Avion, Café Milagro, and Byblos Pizza, off property and all walking distance from Si Como No. We had no trouble with the
drinking water but usually ordered a large bottle at dinner and had enough to make coffee in the room the next morning. We found a 2-for1 pizza deal at Byblos Pizza and dinner for two
including a salad and cocktails was only about $25 USD.

We went on a tour of the Manuel Antonio Park and highly recommend a guide. With a guide, you will see critters that you will never find on your own and gain knowledge not in a brochure. We also went to the Carara Reserve and River Cruise. This was a good trip although a long day spent on the narrow road. Our best tour was the Tiki Canopy tour and did two; one during the day and a second during the night. WOW...! The night trip included a wonderful dinner after the tour. We highly recommend this company and our guides Cricket, Mosquito and Gecko were real pros. We had wanted to schedule a couple of SCUBA dives with Manuel Antonio Divers but their boat was
out of the water for annual maintenance and rainfall made water visibility poor. October is not a good month for diving in the Quepos area. We missed a rafting trip due to high water but our
neighbors did a half-day trip that was great. We recommend any tour were you don’t spend a long time on the road.

Many reviewers mentioned the humidity, problems keeping clothes dry, and suggested quick dry camping clothes. We bought plastic travel “space bags” and found them handy, but not required. In spite of our trip being in the rainy season, we found no need for quick dry clothes and plastic bags. The ceiling fans in our room managed to keep our regular clothes dry. A t-shirt soaked by an afternoon rain was dry in no time. We did have convertible pants that zip off to become shorts that were great. In the end, we would not have packed differently for Costa Rica than we do for our travels to Honduras or other Caribbean destination.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay at Si Como No and if we were to return to this part of Costa Rica, this property would be our first choice. I will be happy to answer any email questions about
our trip sent to greg.carter@orf.org.

  • Liked — The incredible view from the room, the staff, the food, the spa.
  • Disliked — A screen door on the balcony would be great.
  • Tips/Secrets — Comfortable, light-weight waterproof shoes for nature tours
  • Stayed October 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 19
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
1 review
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 10, 2006

We were recommended to stay at this hotel by some American friends who live in Manuel Antonio. Eight of us booked hotel rooms at the end of October for a wedding party. The accommodations are very beautiful, but we were disappointed that both the pool with the water-slide and the jacuzzi were not in operation.
During our stay, we wanted to have some of the small wedding party come back to the hotel to enjoy appetizers and drinks by the pool, but were shot down very rudely by the manager. We offered to pay extra and give the hotel some excellent business with prominent Hollywood studio executives as the guests. May I add that this was in the low season, and the hotel was virtually vacant. Nonetheless, the manager, Russ, told us "NO." In fact, he rudely told us to go to another hotel for the celebration. So we did. We went down to the La Posada Bungalows, and the warm and generous owner, Mike, hosted the most fantastic party. Too bad for Hotel Si Como No. We visit Manuel Antonio every three months and we will never stay at Hotel Si Como No again..

  • Liked — The view was breathtaking.
  • Disliked — The resident manager was very rude.
  • Tips/Secrets — There are other beautiful hotels, with more reasonable prices, and friendlier staff. Don't waste your money here.
  • Stayed October 2006, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Junglefan, Resident manager at Hotel Si Como No, responded to this review, November 15, 2006
Management reply:

The customer unfortunately does not describe accurately the circumstances of his complaint, nor the hotel’s response to them. They requested permission to bring non-hotel guests to use the pool facilities (for swimming etc) after attending an event off property. They were first informed by the front desk that hotel policy is that the pools are exclusively for hotel guests. Our longstanding policy is based on several good reasons: to respect our other paying hotel customers, to maintain the security of our hotel guests and to maintain a tranquil atmosphere at the hotel for all our guests. The customer then insisted on speaking to the manager, again requesting/demanding permission to break the hotel rules, so that persons who elected to stay at other properties could utilize Si Como No’s “nicer” pool. The manager replied that we are very sorry to say no, the pool rules need to be respected throughout the year. The customer then asked what to do, and the manager suggested that they have their get together at the hotel where their friends were staying.

While we regret that the customer is upset about the incident, we are sure that our other customers, past and future, will appreciate the fact we uphold these policies, even when “prominent Hollywood studio execs” come to town. Fortunately, this complaint is a rare example of customer feedback, which year after year normally endorses our policies with excellent customer satisfaction ratings.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
40 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
93 helpful votes 93 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2006

I booked this hotel in Manuel Antonio after reading great reviews here and in books, but I left it feeling mixed. The concept is great - the hotel is built into the side of a hill in the rainforest. Which is very unique but the is also very loud! Our room smelled like a sewer (I think they have plumbling problems there) and the mgmt offered us a 10% discount at checkout, which we accepted.
The rooms are in bad need of renovation, they are very run down, although spacious and they have their own patios.

The breakfast is served on this amazing terrace overlooking the water - the food is quite good for breakfast and for dinner. The pool is also very new and the swim up bar is a blast.

The hotel will recommend the butterfly tour across the street, but it's overpriced. I recommend El Avion - a restaurant built into the plane that started the Iran-Contra affair. It's very neat!

This is a great hotel for families, but not romantic.

  • Liked — Concept, Pool, Rastaurants
  • Disliked — Room decor and cleanliness
  • Stayed June 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
49 reviews 49 reviews
38 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2006

After spending a week in a rural village in the mountains, Hotel Si Como No provided me and my travel companion with all the luxuries we were missing and in desperate need of. The front desk staff was phenomenal! Their customer service skills top-notch. During check-in, I asked if our room had an ocean view. The gentleman informed us that we would have a partial view. Well, when we got to the room, I'm pretty convinced you couldn't get more full-view than what we had. They call a few trees in your view a partial ocean view, I think it made it more beautiful.

The restaurant staff at the Tiki Bar was fabulous, the adult pool bar was also staffed with very friendly people. Plus, with it being low season, I was prepared for diminished services, but Si Como No kept everything open the same hours. Even the movie theatre was open. We took advantage of it one of the nights. It was very nice!

The hotel is close to everything. You're 4 km from downtown Quepos and 4 km from Manuel Antonio. Plus, you can pick up the direct bus back to San Jose right outside the hotel, so it makes things very convenient. The grounds at the hotel were vast and beautiful. There's a free shuttle to Manuel Antonio, too. Fantastic! I'd stay here again in a second. This place was fabulous!

  • Liked — The adult pool area
  • Tips/Secrets — The phone charges are tricky, ask before you use their phone
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Berkeley, California
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2006

After a wonderful 10 day tour of Costa Rica with Caravan Tours (which I can't recommend highly enough - Caravan Tours is the way to go for a fun and well rounded trip to Costa Rica!) we said goodbye to the group and headed to Hotel Si Como No for 5 nights. The grounds and accomodations are beautiful and luxurious and the views are magnificent. Our superior room had floor to ceiling glass windows/french doors that opened out to a private balcony with the most breathtaking view of the ocean and rainforest. We loved sitting on the balcony listening to the many sounds of the rainforest gazing out at the breathtaking view. There is a resident iguana that lives on the property and we loved seeing him at various times throughout our stay. We loved the food at the Rico Tico Cafe (which we liked better than the more expensive restaurant) and the staff could not have been better or more helpful with our many questions. One of the reception staff even made special arrangements for my husband to see a doctor on Friday night when he needed attention for an eye infection.
The breakfasts were delicious and plentiful and we had fun seeing the movies in the state of the art movie theatre at night.
We also booked spa treatments (they have their own spa right on the grounds) and we really loved the pampering. The location is great - there is a terrific cafe (Cafe Milagro) across the street about a block away and other great restaurants a short cab ride away. We booked a river rafting trip and surf lessons through the hotel and had so much fun doing both. The two swimming pools are great - the adult pool and the "family"pool. We had fun going down the slide and we are both in our 40s!!!
All in all - it was the best vacation I have ever had and I have travelled a lot. Si Como No and Manuel Antonio was up there with the 3 most beautiful places I have ever been - if not the most!
I look forward to going back to Si Como No someday.

  • Liked — grounds/room/views/staff/activities
  • Tips/Secrets — There are a number of steps on the grounds so it may not be a good place for older travellers who are not in good shape.
  • Stayed August 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Si Como No

Address: Manuel Antonio, Quepos, Manuel Antonio National Park, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hotel Si Como No 3.5*
Number of rooms: 58
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Si Como No Resort Spa & Wildlife Refuge is a central-Pacific coast resort in the jungle-covered hills just above Manuel Antonio National Park. It’s barefoot luxury with a pura vida vibe, perfect for families and couples who love the beach, tropical adventures, spa, pools, superb dining and four-star accommodations. This award-winning eco-design nature resort & spa offers its guest its own signature version of "barefoot luxury." Panoramic views are yours to enjoy from beautiful balconies looking down from the most idyllic hilltop in the area. Enjoy nearby beaches, Manuel Antonio National Park and the hotel’s private Wildlife Refuge and Butterfly Atrium, adjacent to the property. Renown for warm, friendly service, guests can choose from two excellent restaurants, guided nature and adventure tours plus shopping, fabulous nightlife and our own private cinema. And for Costa Rica weddings and honeymoons, this is where life memories are made, one tropical sunset at a time. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Si Como No Hotel
Si Como No Costa Rica
Hotel Si Como No Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio National Park

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