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“Stay Away!!!” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel and Spa

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Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel and Spa
4.0 of 5 Boutique Hotel   |   Waterfront, Manuel Antonio National Park 6350, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
1 review
“Stay Away!!!”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

Do not stay at this hotel!!!!

Save yourself the headache, money and disappointment. Stay up the street at Parador or a real five star hotel. While listed on various websites as a five star hotel, in reality, if it wasn't in Manuel Antonio, it might as well be a drive-up motel in the middle of nowhere.

We booked two nights on our honeymoon and arrived around 2:00 PM, there was no one to great you and we preceded to for close to an hour to be shown a room that was sold to us as being in the "Penthouse," but was on a lower level above a shack roof -- clearly not the room we had reserved.

Upon entering the initial room, we immediately noticed stains on one of the pillows and dirt on the edge of the Jacuzzi.

After bringing this up to the staff, we were shown two other rooms that also did not meet a five star level and decided not to stay at the hotel.

When we ask the receptionist to get the two nights refunded, the hotel told us we needed to talk with the travel agency to get a refund. We contacted the travel agency, which in turn called the hotel. The hotel refused to issue the refund.

When we asked to speak with the manager, we were strung along and told that the manager was in a meeting indefinitely and that they didn't want to talk with us. The receptionist made no effort to further contact the hotel manager or the owner, who was in San Jose and not reachable.

For a five star hotel, which charges nearly 300 dollars a night, the bare minimum should be to have a manager on premises, a cancellation policy that is realistic and comparable to other hotels, a hotel that is adequately staffed that doesn't lie to their guests.

Please take this review as a warning and save yourself the time and frustration and please book a better hotel!!!!

This was from Amex:

"After our message to the hotel resulted in the same as yours, I am going to keep pushing for your refund. I will be using parts of your complaint to justify why you deserve a refund from the hotel, which I am sending now.

So far, we've been denied twice. I am going to be trying every few days to get a response from the hotel in regards to your refund. I apologize for your troubles with the hotel, but I am still working on this. I've taken the liberty of sending the hotel another request."

This is my complete review:

We booked two nights at Issimo Suites in Manuel Antonio. The room we booked was advertised as being a "penthouse with panoramic ocean and jungle views" at a five star hotel. Upon arriving to the hotel, there was no one to greet us. After check-in we waited an hour to be shown the room. The room we were first shown was far from the description. It was on what would be the ground or first floor above a roof shack. The room was not clean, there was a stain on one of the pillows and there was mold/dirt around the jacuzzi tub. This was clearly a bait and switch scam.

We took our belongings back to the reception desk, we were shown two other rooms that were in similar disrepair. At this point, we decide that we needed to stay at a different hotel because we felt very troubled by the bait and switch tactics of this business. The receptionist said that if we contacted out travel agency we can get refunded. We immediately called Amex and when Amex requested a refund the same Receptionist denied the refund. We requested to speak to a manger and were told that the manger was in a meeting indefinitely. We asked when the meeting would be over we were told the meeting went until five or six and that it didn't matter anyway because the manager didn't want to talk with us. We requested to speak the the owner and was told the owner was in San Jose and was unreachable. We were hoping to resolve this ourselves, without the help of Amex, but the management would not speak with us. As a traveler, this is a clear sign of a dubious operation.

Clearly, the way this hotel operates is a scam. They over promise, overcharge, and most people book online so when they arrive and the hotel refuses to reimburse the guest they then blame it on the travel agency. This is clearly our experience and when you read other reviews about the hotel, this looks like a pattern. The most troubling part of this experience was the evasive nature of the managers and the obvious bate and switch tactics of the hotel staff.

We never stayed at the hotel and immediately booked two nights at a different hotel down the road, also in Manuel Antonio. We would like to get our money back because it is clearly a scam.

Please let me know what additional information you need from me and if it appears that the hotel is still unwilling to refund the money. We would like to open up a case against this business take it to the next step if that is necessary.

Thank you so much for your help in resolving this case. As a loyal Amex customer, I hope that you can serve as a intermediary between me and this very dubious business, whose management was completely unwilling to communicate.


Stayed July 2014
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542 people have reviewed this hotel

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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 (97)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Charleston, South Carolina
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

This hotel was absolutely amazing! Our room was beautiful and we had a beautiful view of the ocean. We had a sloth right outside our bedroom window! The staff was very friendly. The food was good. The pool was clean. It was also in a very convenient location--in walking to Biesanz Beach and a short drive to Manuel Antonio Parque Nacional and Manuel Antonio Beach. I would not hesitate at all to stay here again. If you want, you can check out my full review with pictures at: http://notjustabroad.com/issimo-suites/

Room Tip: We stayed in the junior suite and it was perfect for us. There was a great view and it was quiet!
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  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

Our recent trip to MA and Issimo suites was outstanding thanks to two very special employees. The combination of service and food preparation was incredible thanks to the wonderful team of Dixon and Freddy. We tried other restaurant venues during our stay in MA and, although the food was good, nothing came close to the service and attention provided by Dixon and the unbelievable meals prepared by Freddy. On one special night, Dixon created us a dining experience that included flowers, candles and wonderful table decorations that looked like something out of a fairy tale. The table was specifically set up in a manner that provided us with an awesome view of the ocean and subsequent sunset. Overall, the accommodations were good and the couples massage and dinner combo is hard to beat. However, I think the real "secret" to Issimo is the fantastic restaurant experience. If you want to be treated like Royalty and eat dishes fit for a King, this is your place.

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

Excellent service! The place is well located and very well worth the price. The staff is simply outstanding. Courteous, friendly, helpful. Did not disappoint! Access to all Manuel Antonio nearby. They have an excellent dinner service as well. The massage area is also worth a visit.

  • Stayed July 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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.
Rockford
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

The hotel only has 13 rooms, the room we stayed in had the most amazing views and beautiful layout! The bed was so comfortable, the staff from the concierge to the massage therapist was very professional, attentive and friendly. The restaurant had very good food for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Had two massages there both very fantastic. 5 minute walk to an almost private beach out of a movie set! The location was perfect and very central. I will go back to Costa Rica just to stay at Issimo Hotel"

  • Stayed July 2014, traveled with friends
    • 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.
Montreal, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you to the wonderful staff at Issimo Hotel. My girlfriend and I really enjoyed our stay. The people were so nice to us and welcoming, made us feel right at home. They even called us to tell us that some monkeys were hanging out in the dinning area so that we could come up and take some pictures. The food was tasty and personally I fell in love with the simplicity of beans and rice for breakfast, the cook gave us the recipe so that we could bring it back to Canada.

We stayed for three nights and had a car to get around. I think having a car was a good idea so that you are not stuck with taxis, be careful with driving!!!!!

Room Tip: We stayed in the lower level and we were very satisfied with the view, the monkeys jump around at yo...
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  • Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Mansfield, Ohio
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

After seeing all other hotels once we got there I was so happy we chose issimo. We stayed in the royal suite and every morning feed the monkeys sugar packets which was awesome. We had our own small pool and hot tub which was perfect for our honeymoon. Word of advice, learn Spanish and don't go to any supermarket close to hotel. . Crazy expensive. The Quepos market is best place to go. The staff helped with everything we asked and always treated us as friends. Food was good and drinks were cheap. The private beach, short walk, was very seclusive and cozy. Definitely worth going and we will go back :)

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
IssimoSuites, Public Relations Manager at Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel and Spa, responded to this review, 1 week ago
Jake, Thank you for for taking the time to share your experience at our hotel with us. We love hearing back from guests about their stay. I'm glad to hear our local monkeys were able to keep you entertained every morning. We look forward to having you come back and help feed the monkeys someday soon.

- J
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel and Spa

Address: Waterfront, Manuel Antonio National Park 6350, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel and Spa 4*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel, Spa & Waterfront Reserve offers intimacy and elegance for your romantic escape. Each suite includes a Jacuzzi bath tub for relaxation and enjoyment, as well as a majestic ocean view overlooking a pristine pacific cove. A plush king size bed, sofa, and room service from our boutique restaurant await your arrival. You can also indulge yourself with a massage in our spa after a day of adventure on one of our many tours or beaches. Our romantic hideaway suites access adjacent sandy beaches with a walk to the cove or famous Manuel Antonio Park and beaches. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel Manuel Antonio National Park
Issimo Hotel Boutique
Issimo Boutique Hotel
Issimo Suites Boutique Hotel And Spa Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio National Park

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