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Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica
4.5 of 5 Resort   |   Punta Quepos, Manuel Antonio National Park 311-6350, Costa Rica   |  
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Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
“3*Resort”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed September 5, 2012

After we got to the resort, we appreciated that our room was ready even we arrived couple of hours before official check in hours. We loved the welcome drinks and fruit on our arrival. 
However the receptionist did not inform us about the complimentary tours - one of them was a tortilla tour explaining the costa rican lifestyle etc. We accidentaly found out on our last day and would love to join it.
 
Anyway we got a partial ocean view room - even we booked the ocean view room. It was situated in Building 1 as far I remember 102. The room was nice, spacious, with big terace and enough space even for more people. We also like that it comes with 2 bathrooms. The bathrooms are moulded, need to be painted.
Unfortunatelly our room was smelly. We asked the receptionists too get us some candles to get the smell away. Instead of that the hotel stuff just spray the room with something quiet stromg and we could not breathe next couple of hours. 
 
We also enjoyed dinning in the resort - breakfast was fantastic. I loved the fresh juice and fruit plate with some homemade cookies. The menu was also big enough and we enjoyed the great view on the beach. We also had a dinner and I loved the black beans soup - grandma recipe.
 
Wifi in our room was not working very well and we asked several times to get it done - I think 4 times, but the stuff did not repair it. It is also a pity that the cleaning women do not understand English once we asked to come in 15 min later to get ready for dinner and nobody showed up later.
 
Even worst experience we had with the laundry Service. When we left the clothes to clean in the morning  even after 3 times calling the reception that we are leaving next morning, nobody knew where our clothes are. They promised us to have them already in the room - but in the room there was nothing at all!
 
I mean there are couple of things which made us unhappy and we didnt feel very welcome. On the other hand, I really want to thank to Sergio and Alex - golf cars drivers as these were the nicest people in the resort.

Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cayuga S, Manager at Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, responded to this review, September 7, 2012
Dear Adriana,
Greetings from Manuel Antonio. We are very sorry to hear that your experience at our hotel was not what you expected. We are proud to be Costa Rica’s first hotel to combine 5 Star Quality with 5 Leave Sustainability. Some things went wrong though. Thanks for pointing out all the very positive aspects about your stay with us such as the early arrival service, the nice and spacious room, breakfast and dining in our restaurants and the special service by our golf cart drivers. We are in the process of very carefully reviewing the glitches that happened such as the confusion about the room view and odors as well as wifi and laundry service failures. You are in your total right to point those things out as they should not have negatively influenced your experience. Be assured that they will be fixed so that on your next stay, there won’t be any of those problems. We appreciated your feedback and hope that you are willing to give us a chance to show that we can do 5* as we typically do with all of our guests. Thank you very much.
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1,006 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 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 (307)
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English first
San Jose, Costa Rica
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 29, 2012

Arenas del Mar is a must-to-see place in the rain-forest of Manuel Antonio. The place is amazing since you feel that you are in the middle of the wildlife but you are in your jacuzzi just meters away from your bed.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Malvern, Pennsylvania
Senior Contributor
43 reviews 43 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 22 cities Reviews in 22 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2012

From the moment we arrived at the front desk till we bid "hasta la vista" to the staff, our experiences as guests at Arenas del Mar were delightful. When I saw the incredible view from our room -- it really took my breath away!

This was our first visit to Costa Rica and it was tremendously helpful to have our off-site experiences guided by local staff. The front desk has a photo guide iPad that describes many opportunities for adventures into the exotic and beautiful environment of the Pacific lowlands: land and sea. Since we didn't have a car, the concierge provided a driver. If you have any interest in animals, plants, reptiles or eco-systems or just like to enjoy the gorgeous landscape, there is a mini-adventure available for you. We went kayaking in the mangroves; swimming in the frothy, warm Pacific; ate lunch at the private beach with the iguanas; walked the hanging rope bridges in the treetops and dunked our feet in the icy water at the base of a waterfall in the jungle. The knowledgeable guides provided by the hotel pointed out what we never would have noticed on our own and kept us out of trouble, too! We saw so many amazing animals!

The two on-site restaurants are really great and offer local Tico dishes, several types of ceviche but also conventional foods like steak and potatoes. The chef is flexible and accomodates vegetarians. We ate at the restaurant 24/7 and probably tried every dish. Yes, they do all the bar favorites from Central America with amazing combinations of fruits and rum and whatever!!Breakfast was especially wonderful with a plate of fresh local fruit: did you know that bananas actually can have a taste, not just a texture?? The fruits of Costa Rica are amazing. And did I mention the coffee: wow, you have not had this coffee, ever, unless you have been to Central America...

The wait staff and the hotel staff are just the best, ever. Such accomodating people!! I will remember them, their generosity and warmth, forever!

Room Tip: Upper level buildings are closer to the entrance, the main restaurant, the spa and a pool. They hav...
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  • Stayed August 2012, 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cayuga S, Manager at Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, responded to this review, August 28, 2012
Dear
What a great review. Thank you. Your review is a great motivation for all of us to continue to create “Pura Vida” experiences for all of our guests. Wildlife viewing with our expert guides, great meals at the Playitas beach or with views of the Manuel Antonio National Park and of course the personalized service by our staff. We hope this will not be your last visit to Costa Rica and would love to have you back at Arenas del Mar in Manuel Antonio real soon. Saludos,
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M-Town
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 21 cities Reviews in 21 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2012

This hotel has breathtaking Jungle Scenery. Early mornings, we experienced Monkeys and Sloths hanging around in the trees. You hear and see them as they were playing, jumping from tree to tree. What makes this extra special was you didn't have to really go anywhere in order to see the Monkeys. The Rooms are outdoor based, however you can semi close it up from the outside elements. We had small lizards that slept on the ceiling and walls throughout the night in our room. THEY DID NOT BOTHER US!!!!!! The ocean can be heard very good, but the sceney is rather far away from the actual rooms.

  • Stayed September 2011, 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.
Springfield, Virginia
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
21 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 20, 2012

We came from the Nayara in Arenal, which is one of the best hotels in the world, so our expectations were perhaps unfairly high. We just didn't feel very welcome when we first arrived, but we had trouble putting our finger on what the problem was. There was only one restaurant, and there wasn't much to do at the hotel other than sit in our room, go to the bar/restaurant, or go to to the pool/beach. Since our room was unpleasantly cramped, and if it rained we couldn't go to the pool, we got really tired of the bar area. Also, my husband is a smoker, and there is no smoking anywhere on the hotel property. I'm happy to have him quit, but I didn't think asking him to go cold turkey on our honeymoon was the best option. And I would have loved to have been able to sit on our balcony, smoking a cigar, watching the view -- but no-go. We also hated having to ask for a golf-cart to get anywhere...we like a little more autonomy.

But then. We mentioned to the front desk that we weren't 100% happy with our room, and one day later, we were upgraded (for free) to the most beautiful suite. The staff was so gracious about it, and they spent the rest of our stay really going out of their way to make us happy. Sure, this didn't change the fact that the hotel options were limited, the food was only okay, and the spa was simply "fine," but the staff's absolute dedication to our happiness, combined with the gorgeous views and great beach, won us over.

The things this hotel needs to do to truly become a luxury hotel are so small. For example:

- Throw in binoculars in the rooms so we can whale-watch right from our balconies (we saw lots of whales while were there!)
- Maximize your great views from the spa and create open-air treatment rooms. Create a couples room and shower for joint treatments.
- Provide other food options -- people like choice. Also, Americans don't necessarily love a lengthy full sit-down breakfast every morning; buffets aren't a bad idea.
- Create options for guests to explore the area on their own. Offer back-packs with lunch, towels, and bottled water so we can walk to the national park on our own. Let us rent bicycles from the reception area. Share maps of jogging trails or bike paths with the guests. We got sooo tired of scheduled tours during our vacation.
- Update the literature in the rooms with the correct room service menu and spa information. The information in both our rooms was wrong, and the paper itself was torn and dirty.

All of this aside, we loved the staff, the beach, the pool drinks, and the service. Just be aware that this hotel is still building its capabilities.

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dublin, OH
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
25 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
32 helpful votes 32 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2012

I read many reviews before our trip. I was surprised so many people mentioned the staff considering the spectacular location with both rainforest and beach. The rainforest, two beaches and ocean view rooms truly are spectacular, but now I understand the reviews.

The staff are nothing short of amazing. Your happiness really does matter to them. They want to get to know you and they want to share their beautiful country and themselves with you. If you care about something, they care about it for you. For example, we were so excited our first day to see a sloth. A staff member spent 20 minutes locating a Sloth on Playitas Beach for us - after several times of us saying it was OK to stop looking. This set the tone and there were many other examples of such caring service. It is actually difficult to convey how very special it is to be surrounded by so much genuine kindness and good will. To be immersed in this positive energy is truly a privilege. Costa Rica is a beautiful country indeed blessed with so much natural beauty, but its greatest treasure is its people. Thank you so very much Arenas del Mar. Pura Vida!

Room Tip: Top floor oceanview rooms have amazing views.
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  • Stayed June 2012, 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Springfield, Virginia
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

We were amazed at this place. They use golf carts to ferry you around. The staff does everything, brings your luggage to the pool so you can shower when we were leaving after we checked out and took an ocean dip. Breakfast by their main pool overlooking the Pacific: pastries, fruit and you also have wide choices, coffee, juice. Restaurant is wonderful for dinner. Surf lessons for the kids. You can walk back from Manuel Antonio. Also a big Jacuzzi on our balcony overlooking the Pacific.

Room Tip: Ask for room overlooking the Pacific, 3rd floor if possible.
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  • Stayed August 2012, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

Address: Punta Quepos, Manuel Antonio National Park 311-6350, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Manuel Antonio National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#1 Top resorts Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#2 Luxury Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#2 Spa Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica 4.5*
Number of rooms: 38
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located within walking distance of Manuel Antonio National Park, Arenas Del Mar is an extraordinary beachfront and rainforest resort catering to travelers looking for more than the typical luxury hotel experience. Stunning, luxurious, and sustainable, this hotel has 38 rooms with exclusive beach and nature views as it is nestled in eleven acres of rainforest with private trails and two tree-shaded white sand beaches. Unique among the hotels in Manuel Antonio, our carbon neutral property offers sustainable, luxurious lodging—the first Costa Rican luxury hotel to be awarded the Five Sustainability Leaf Award and a Five Star Award. Arenas Del Mar is the perfect base for exploring on your Manuel Antonio vacation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Arenas Del Mar Beachfront And Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica Manuel Antonio National Park

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