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“Beautiful Place, Great Location, Great Views” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Tulemar Bungalows & Villas

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Tulemar Bungalows & Villas
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Tulemar Gardens, Manuel Antonio National Park 6350, Costa Rica   |  
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Tulemar Mini Suites-$220!
Milwaukee
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Beautiful Place, Great Location, Great Views”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2013

My husband and I stayed at the Tulemar Bungalows and Villas for three nights last week. We were blown away by the private beach, landscaping and wildlife. We stayed in a one bedroom bungalow #308. Orlando, not our concierge, promised us monkeys and boy did he deliver. Each day, we were visited by a family of monkeys. In addition the slough that lived in the tree next to our bungalow kept us laughing. We have pictures of sunsets that were outstanding.

And while most of the staff were very solicitous and accommodating there were unfortunately
a few clinkers in the group that caused a very good rating instead of an excellent rating. One driver in particular would not drop us off at the point that we designated. Because "he knew best" we wandered around quite a bit before we found our villa again. Our concierge was not available when we needed her, did not check back with us about our needs and had very little enthusiasm. But the thing that most irritated my husband was the fact that they could not change a $20 bill to smaller change upon our arrival because they had "no cash on the grounds". This prevented us from tipping the staff for the first day until we got some cash in town.

While the villas are positioned to view the ocean they are a bit worn and need some sprucing up. Also their were two beds in the bedroom, both doubles. It has been a long time since we have slept in a double bed. I would have appreciated it if there was a single king or even queen bed instead of two doubles. And finally the trail that provided access to the beach was downright treacherous! The staff should walk this and make their own assessment of the dangers of this trail.

The private beach was outstanding, the water was warm and beautiful, and it was never crowded. This alone was worth the price of admission.

Sounds like we hated Tulemar, but really we did think it was very good and we would recommend it to others. Our comments are aimed at the management in hopes that you will make adjustments to staff and other issues so this can be again a five star rated accommodation.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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TulemarDave, General Manager at Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, responded to this review, March 5, 2013
HI Trying2Retire.....(love your name)......thanks for the review on your stay in the Buena Vista 1 Bedroom Select Villa.......I'm glad that you mentioned that you enjoyed your stay and that you would recommend us to others.....and we do take your comments seriously.......Orlando is a great concierge and while he can't always make the monkeys appear......he does try his best.....;-) ......we'll speak with your assigned concierge and the van driver in order to understand how they failed to perform for you...like failing to describe the three ways to go to our beach...the resort shuttle van, walking along the paved roadway or for the adventurous, the North or South Beach Trails....neither of these trails are meant to be the expressway to the beach, but a nature/hiking trail...very rustic, but beautiful (including a waterfall, look out points and wildlife along the way!)......regarding your villa.....the beds are the same in all 6 of these one bedroom villas....either one king or two queens.....so, yes you did have two queen beds.....(we don't have any "doubles" in the Buena Vista Villas).....we'll also pass on to them your comments about the "worn" look.....my apologies.....that should not happen....and you are right....the Buena Vista Front Desk does not keep cash on site.....however.....our office is right up above......and we're happy to exchange your currency.....colones or dollars....however we can.....thanks for taking the time to post your review and for giving us a chance to make some improvements.

Tulemar Dave
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1,270 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    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 (269)
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English first
Austin, Texas
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

Tulemar is a self-contained paradise that has everything you'll find in the Manuel Antonio park, only better! From the fantastic private beach to the beautiful property with pools, hiking trails and abundant wildlife (we saw several monkeys, sloths, birds...including a flock of tucans), you never need to leave Tulemar to experience the coast. We stayed in Panorama North, a 2-bedroom, 2-story unit that is well appointed and well maintained with 180-degree views from both balcony levels stretching from the water to the mountains. Balconies (one which has a hot tub) are a great place for bird/nature watching. Panorama North also has an excellent staff.

  • Stayed February 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.
TulemarDave, General Manager at Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, responded to this review, March 5, 2013
Hi 4austintx.....thanks for the great headline......we love that....and really appreciate your remarks......we work very hard to please all of our guests......so that they have a wonderful experience like you did.......from the accommodations.....to the personal concierge service.....to Tulemar itself.....with amazing ocean views.....our beach....the wildlife.....the hiking trails......and our location....right in the heart of Manuel Antonio.......Diego and Bill enjoyed having you stay with them in Casa Mirador......(new name!)......and we'd love to have you back again!

Tulemar Dave
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Connecticut
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

We stayed for 8 nights over our February vacation with our two children 12 and 9. We stayed in a 1 bedroom bungalow #116. Our room was spacious and clean and perfectly nice. The view is amazing and the sounds your hear outside seemed piped in. The only downside is they are in need of updating at some point and it would have been fantastic to have a deck. Julien and I believe Christian or Chris helped with all of our plans. They set up our ride from the airport which was long but pleasant. The driver took us to a great place to have lunch right outside of San Jose. He would have stopped for snacks and drinks whenever we wanted. They set up our fantastic white water rafting day, our ATV trip (don't wear anything good - it gets trashed) and surfing lessons. Johnny and two other guys took us to a great spot on the public beach and had my kids and I surfing to the beach. They were patient, excellent teachers. They brought drinks and snacks for us. We loved Tulemar's private beach (they could probably use a few more boogie boards), enjoyed the complimentary kayaks and all the animals - monkeys, sloths, iguanas - on the beautiful property. The beach bar was nice and the view while eating lunch was fantastic. The family pool is great, the pool next to our bungalow was a more convenient location and the view is gorgeous but unfortunately the bar area is closed and there is some construction going on. Costa Rica is a gorgeous place with extremely friendly, chill people who don't try to sell you everything in sight. Many good restaurants including Kapi Kapi and Cafe Milagro (great breakfast, lunch and dinner) are a very quick walk from the resort. The supermarket is a 2 minutes walk or they are happy to take you. It is a beautiful resort with a very helpful accommodating staff. I highly recommend it for a wonderful family trip. A perfect combination of relaxation and adventure.

Room Tip: Might want to splurge for the deck and updated house.
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TulemarDave, General Manager at Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, responded to this review, March 4, 2013
Hi 1330ag.....thanks for taking the time to post the review on your stay in our Tulemar Bungalows.......and Tulemar.......the Bungalows really are unique.......perched on the hillside with amazing ocean views......the jungle surrounding you....they look exactly like they do in the photos on our web site......great for a family like yours......the Bungalows are the only property in Tulemar without balconies or decks......so we have lots of options for your next trip......Julien and Chris enjoyed talking care of you during your stay....they really do know the best tours, activities and guides in the area......thanks again for staying wiith us and we hope to see you back again!

Tulemar Dave
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Philadelphia
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

I just spent 6 nights at Tulamar and had my wedding there right on the beach! I had a group of 21 family and friends all staying at property. I was apprehensive about my guests enjoying time in Costa Rica and now soo happy with my decision to stay at Tulemar. Everyone loved it! I was especially nervous about my and husbands parents who rarely travel and would have probably never picked Costa Rica as a destination. They had a blast! You really can not beat Tulemars private beach. This was the common meeting place for majority of group everyday. It is paradise! We utilized kayaks and boogie boards a lot! The staff on beach is very eager to please guests- from lining up chairs and umbrellas each day for our group to bringing drinks over when we were having too much fun to notice they were ready! The beach bar is great - drinks as awesome as I remembered from last visit - and spider monkeys visited bar everyday! There are 4 pools on property and all have great views. Family pool has bar for drinks and food. Always good! Beach bar has breakfast - should do once during stay- soo relaxing drinking coffee staring at beautiful beach!
The staff was great! Dave was always willing to talk to me when I called prior to arrival to answer any questions I had. Also told me to have my guests call and ask for him to help answer any questions. The online chat on 4tulemar.com is great and give immediate feedback. That website is very informative for all services offered and different housing options on property. I stayed in 3 bedroom bungalow which was insane! Definitely suggest this for 3 couples or 6-7 people who can share rooms. Stunning views and visit from monkeys every day on terrace! They love lounging by hot tub! White faced and squirrel visited us! Also saw two sloths on property! Julien was our concierge who helped me months before visit with transport for guests and shopping and was such a huge help! Thank you again to all staff especially Dave and Julien!!!! The service we received was excellent! Also thank you to Jose-hope I got name right- who was bartender for our cocktail night by family pool. Made it awesome with special attention to all my guests!
Our parents stayed in the Panoramas and were very pleased. Bill their concierge was always willing to assist them if needed. In my opinion upper level Panoramas have best view I have ever seen! Stay in one of them if you want the most spectacular view on property all though from bungalow to villa all have great views! Casa Fruitas also is awesome- never stayed in but did walk through when stayed on property last year and is soo cool!
We needed transport for large group on one occasion that was not previously set up by wedding planner- Tropical Occasions and they were excellent!- and front desk set it up no problem. Shuttle service was used a lot by my guests and never a long wait. They will only take you as far as reception at front so make sure if you call for transport outside of property you specify to front desk you need cab as opposed to shuttle. Local market is an easy walk and ATM 5 minute walk from front gate.
We went to Mar Luna twice for dinner and was great as well as Raphael Terriza. Had rehearsal dinner at Ronny's Place and was awesome! A must do!
I am still in Costa Rica so don't want to be on computer all day or would keep writing! I think Tulemar is #1 place to stay in Manuel Antonio! Thanks for making my wedding so wonderful!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
TulemarDave, General Manager at Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, responded to this review, March 4, 2013
Hi Kathy......thanks for the wonderful review on Tulemar......we loved having you back with us again.....with your family and friends......for your wedding......we're so glad everyone enjoyed themselves......what a fun group......and active!!......from the zip lines to the cocktail parties to the nightly dinners......and the WEDDING.....you kept busy......but time for relaxation at the beach too......thanks for the kind words on Julien....your personal concierge......and it was great that you got to experience so many of our accommodations.....from the Buena Vista 3 Bedroom Premium Villa that you stayed in....to Casa Panorama.....Casa de Frutas.....and the Bungalows.......thanks for your comments also about our web site.....(and all the different pages, from weather to transportation to activities).......and the "on line chat" feature.....instant answers to your questions......congratulations to you and Joe and we hope to see you back with us again!

Tulemar Dave
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King's Lynn, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

We loved the beach! Even the photographs on the website don't do it justice. Tropical forest meets crescent of sand and the warmest sea I've ever swum in. Always some shade for those of us who need it. Very clean, safe to swim which is great for this coast. Not really a place to snorkel, but the free kayaks were brilliant: a lot of fun. As were the chairs and towels, and pay-at-the-end beach cafe. We thought the lunches were very good (not cheap, but this place isn't) and the strawberry smoothie was well worth the walk! I'm just thinking about us relaxing over lunch while watching a troop of capuchin monkeys scampering over the ropes of the cafe awning. Bliss.
We stayed in Nido de Gansos. Wow. Cool, spacious, immaculate, spotlessly maintained. Oh, the pool! The first day we were there, we watched a female three-toed sloth with baby climbing slowly along the cecropia tree right next to our balcony. Black vultures and a few magnificent frigate birds wheeling above the trees by the ocean. Cherrie's tanager posing in trees below. Rufous-tailed hummingbird in porterweed from the loo window. Amazing we even made it down the trails, so much to see.
Management and concierge service supremely efficient, a little overwhelming, not sure that we met expectations. Bill, our concierge, was immensely helpful, laid-back and lovely.
We travelled a long way for a relatively short time, and we all felt we'd found the very best place to be in Manuel Antonio/Quepos. Thank you, all the team: it was a great holiday.

Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
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TulemarDave, General Manager at Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, responded to this review, March 4, 2013
Hi Sarah......thanks for posting the review on your stay in Nido de Gansos.....one of our private villas in Tulemar.......3 bedrooms / 3.5 baths / 3 levels....with a private pool......and ocean views......plus lots of wildlife visits too......and Diego/Bill as your personal concierge team....a great choice.........glad to hear you also enjoyed our Tulemar Beach......a perfect description......you did travel a long distance to stay with us (UK) and we're so pleased that you enjoyed your stay....hope to see you back with us again!

Tulemar Dave.
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SLC
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

We returned from Tulemar, with discussions as to when we could return again. We stayed at Tulemar for 5 nights in a Bungalow. Our conceirge, Chris was attentive and anticiaped our needs. Chris took the stress out of planning tours, and organized everything! Chris suggested some truly memorable tours from the sailboat cruise at sunset, Mangrove tour at night, and horseback riding through the rainforest to a magnificant waterfall. The Bungalow was in the perfect setting, and truly felt like a grown up treehouse. We felt like we had discovered paradise when we first arrived to Tuelmar, and that experience lasted the full week. Everyone was extremely attentive, friendly, and helpful. The Bungalow was better than we anticipated with windows surrounding us. The monkeys would come up to the window. I have to say, the Private beach was amazing! There was no need to go to a pool, or to a public beach. The private beach had everything we could ask for: kyaks, snorkeling gear, boogie boarding, a cafe and bar! Tulemar is also within walking distance to several local restuarants, and bars.

Room Tip: We stayed in Bunaglow 121! It was private, quiet and wonderful! I would venture to say any place at...
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  • Stayed February 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
    • 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.
TulemarDave, General Manager at Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, responded to this review, March 4, 2013
HI Girls.....thanks for the great review on your stay in our Tulemar Bungalows......we loved having you with us......Chris said you were a lot of fun.....the Bungalows are a lot like a "tree house for grown ups".....a good description......glass all around.....wonderful ocean views too.....plus the wildlife....plus the Tulemar Beach.....all combined for a terrific stay.....and Chris to make things easy......we're already looking forward to your return as well.

Tulemar Dave
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South Bend, Indiana
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2013

First of all I would like to say that it pains me not to give Tulemar 5 stars because we absolutely loved everything about it from the beach to the rooms to the people, with one major exception. Our personal concierge, Kimberly, from the minute she walked up to us, shamelessly flirted with my husband in front of me while ignoring me all together! She was so blatantly disrespectful with her comments and advances toward him that I was left speechless and angry. The worst part was, I felt like I couldn't say anything to her because she was our driver, tour guide, and overseer of our trip in an unfamiliar country. I was so upset the first day that we were forced to ride around with her while she pointed out gentleman's clubs to my husband, continually complimented his physique, and tactlessly followed him around, all the while being completely callous to me, that we cut the tour short and told her we'd find our way around by ourselves. I couldn't even sleep that night because all I could think about was how distasteful and offensive her actions were, and I have no doubt she knew exactly how she was acting! Needless to say, losing sleep over someone you have to interact with on a daily basis is not what I had in mind on a tropical vacation! My husband and I have traveled all over the world, and I can honestly say nothing has ever been as unpleasant as Kimberly's scandalous behavior.

  • Stayed January 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
    • 2 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.
TulemarDave, General Manager at Tulemar Bungalows & Villas, responded to this review, March 2, 2013
HI JM19M......I am so sad to think that your stay in Tulemar was marred by your feelings toward your concierge......I could have easily intervened had I known.....I'm sure we met at check in....(I meet almost everyone who books with me).....my desk is right up front with a big "Tulemar Dave" sign......I would have been happy to make a switch for you......we don't want any of our guests to feel uncomfortable.....Kim is a mature woman and has been in the hospitality industry here for over 20 years......as you can see by the many reviews below our guests love her.....I know she will reflect on your visit to see what went wrong.....the last thing Kim wants are unhappy guests as well......that said.....I'm glad you did enjoy the other aspects of your stay......Casa Panorama.....our beach....the wildlife and the overall service.......we hope you'll stay with us again.

Tulemar Dave
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Additional Information about Tulemar Bungalows & Villas

Address: Tulemar Gardens, Manuel Antonio National Park 6350, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Number of rooms: 34
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Tulemar is the premier resort development in Manuel Antonio. Gated and secure, the 33 acre jungle resort is perched on the hillside overlooking the Pacific, but continues down all the way to our own beach. It includes the Tulemar Bungalows, Buena Vista Villas and privately owned villas such as Villa Mot Mot, Casa Panorama, Casa de Frutas, Casa Las Nubes and Villa Kiskadee. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Tulemar Bungalows & Villas Hotel Manuel Antonio National Park
Tulemar Bungalows And Villas
Tulemar Hotel
Tulemar Bungalows & Villas Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio National Park

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