This hotel mostly delivered on the 'luxury' part of the Costa Rica trip and I recommend it if this is what you are looking for. I personally did not find it to be the seemingly life changing experience that others have had, experiencing inconsistency with the food - from fabulous to poor and finding the interiors cold. It needs an interior designer to add some depth and warmth to rooms currently lit by recessed neon with clumsy dimmers. Even a table lamp would have been nice, though I loved the fire-exit chic of the exteriors. But I have said I recommend it and here is why.
First - the view from the hotel is stunning. It is worth the drive, I can assure you. I guess the owners might wonder who needs table lamps when you have the scenery this hotel offers - and they'd have a point.
It has some great, friendly staff/concierge, all of whom appear to have been expertly chosen by the managers. Their English was probably better than mine, were very presentable, sorted any issues out quickly and zipped about on their golf carts ferrying guests around with smiles and enthusiasm. Well done all concerned, especially the guy who zipped me down the winding hill on the golf buggy steering with one hand while holding aloft the owners meal with the other. I prayed for you every single second of that short trip, and I don't even believe in the Almighty.
The spa treatment was extremely good - very professional and no nonsense - just an excellent massage (which you will need after your drive). I highly recommend.
The hotel has a great beach service - they'll drive you there (about 5-10 mins) and you'll be looked after by a beach company linked to the hotel offering loungers, shade, drinks and food. Again, no nonsense - it just works. Brilliantly, your bill for this can be added to your room. Nice one.
I like how the pools have been designed to mimic their environment. You will see when you get there. Be in the pool for sunset - it is stunning. You can see the ocean beyond verdant woodland and fields while the sky burns bright orange - did I tell you the views were beautiful?! There is a number to call for bar service at the pool - sadly the phone was rarely there, something raised with the barman but although he understood the English, I am not sure he got the point. There is a happy hour in the restaurant - would be more fun to have it by the pool and make it more of a focal point.
I nearly wrote a bomb just to get one of the manager's brilliantly waspish responses but that would not have been fair - with or without table lamps. So do come to this place, but make it part of a trip that ensures you see as much of this wonderful country as you can. Also, no kids allowed, so don't rock up with any and expect to get in - you won't, thank goodness.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Gaia Hotel, Manuel Antonio's only 5-star resort and dining. Bask in our infinity-edge pools, dash Aveda bath salts into your Jacuzzi and relax enjoying the jungle and ocean views. Rooms feature A/C, cable, flat screen TVs, portable phones, home entertainment units, internet connectivity, coffee-maker, mini-bar, safety box, hairdryer, 24/7 room service and full spa services. Your personal valet sees to your needs, and our Nature Guide hosts an exclusive tour of our 12-acre Nature Reserve. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Gaia Hotel And Reserve
- Gaia Hotel & Reserve Costa Rica/Manuel Antonio National Park