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“Ok for basic and budget travels but definitely not luxury!” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort, Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica

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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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Washington, DC
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
“Ok for basic and budget travels but definitely not luxury!”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

I want to provide candid feedback on our experience at Arenas del Mar, so that other travelers will not be as disappointed as we were. Your hotel bills itself as luxury, and it, frankly, is not. For a budget traveler or a basic traveler, it is fine and the location is clearly a selling point (though Manuel Antonio is a VERY touristy area that I would not choose to visit again). We found the hotel to be outdated and musty -- in need of new furniture and heavy exterior cleaning. The beachfront restaurant had dirty furniture and overused plasticware. The rooms were ok and the bedding was clean and comfortable but the tiling and flooring and bathrooms could be vastly improved. Again it was basic, not luxury. The common areas were not appealing. The restaurant food was terrible and highly overpriced.

I don't know how this hotel has the reviews it does from Trip Advisor, Expedia and Travel and Leisure. We were fresh off a stay of a true luxury resort in Costa Rica and our experiences were literally night and day. Maybe it was just an expectations problem, but I do not think any traveler looking for luxury accommodations would be satisfied with this experience.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 13
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, October 22, 2013
Dear Lymtravels,
thank you for taking the time to write your candid review about your stay at our hotel. First of all, we are very sorry that we were not able to meet your expectations. To receive a review like yours after 13 perfect scores is very frustrating for all of us here at the hotel. But at the same time, we see an opportunity in this and if you don't mind, we would like to get a bit more feedback from you directly on how we can improve. We often find that the definitions of luxury and the expectations of our guests vary quite a bit based on their likes and preferences. If you send us a note to hans@cayugaonline.com, we will try and set up a phone call to find out more. We promise to work hard to fix the things you will point out to us. Thanks again.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,006 reviews from our community

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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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BOSTON
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2013

This resort was fabulous. I would recommend staying in a superior room for the extra room with an ocean view. You are greeted on arrival with a delicious smoothy, so nice!
You really feel like you are in the tropics, the resort has done a wonderful job keeping the natural landscape intact and lots of iguanas, monkeys, tropical birds and other assorted visitors.
And the food is unbelievable - fresh fruit, vegetables, fish.... We ate all our meals onsite, it was so good!!

  • Stayed November 2012, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Yardley, Pennsylvania
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 16, 2013

Our family of six spent a week at Arenas del Mar at the end of August. It is hands down the best vacation we have ever had!! Everything from the accommodations to the amazing staff were top notch and made this trip memorable. Ersel and Brandon, just to name a few, made us all feel so special. They remembered all of our names and always went out of their way to cater to our every need. We loved spending time at the little beach- chairs were set up for us and the pool and restaurant are just a few feet away. My fair skin especially liked being able to sit in the shade while the kids were in the water or playing in the sand! You will surely not regret your stay at Arenas del Mar.

Room Tip: We LOVED our room -703!! The views are unbeatable!!!
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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.
Amstelveen
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2013

Staff:

Very friendly, very helpful, they knew our names within a day ! Even doing something extra is not too much to ask. We stayed her for our honeymoon for five nights and one night I asked them to put candles on our balcony, fill the Jacuzzi and put a bottle of champagne on ice outside. No extra charge other than for the bottle of Champagne.

Rooms:

We had book and Ocean view room but got upgraded to a suite when we arrived. The Suite was clean, the bathroom was maybe a little out dated (but I understood they are renovating those as we speak) and the ocean view balcony we had was big (with Jacuzzi) and had a stunning view.

Restaurant:

The restaurant is ok and I guess if yo stay away from wine it is not too expensive. The choice on the menu is maybe a little limited compared to what they serve at the beach bar during lunch but everything we had tasted good. It would be nice if it would be possible to have dinner in the poolbar so that this gives you the option of ordering a pizza for dinner rather than having one for lunch.

ECO-Hotel:

Well the hotel promotes itself as promoting the environment. I also do believe that that is truelly their mission, and here I would like to offer some suggestions:

- When we arrived in our suite, the door to the balcony was open, both air conditioning units were on, as well as the ceiling fans.... not very eco
- As in any hotels you now-a-days see have the signs about recycling your towels. We put them up to dry every day as we do not need an new towel every day...... And yet they got changed every day
- The hotel promotes not feeding the animals and I do beleive that that is a good thing. Feeding monkeys will only lead into increasingly agressiveness towards humans. Yet an one point we saw hotel staff luring monkeys with food. Ok they did not hand over the food but the fact they learn them to come onto hotel grounds as there may be some food out there is not a good thing. I reported this to the reception and they took immediate action..... I hope the message came through....

SPA;

We took a couple massage for about 50 min and paid about 160 USD. Although the massage was nice I think this is a bit overpriced....

Overall:
The hotel may look a bit steep compared to others in the area but it is very very well worth booking this hotel. We had an amazing end of our honeymoon due to the hotel's location, views and service.

  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newport News, Virginia
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 12, 2013

This resort was great! The views were spectacular! I visited with my Mom, sister and 2 aunts and we all had a great time. The breakfast was delicious! Our rooms were comfortable and everyone at the hotel was very friendly and accommidating. The dinner and lunches were good, not much of a selection when it came to Tico food but they had good choices. A little pricey for dinner...but we opted to go out on the town with recommendations from the staff for authentic Tico food which was great! The hotel drove us one night and the other they set up a taxi ride for us. The hotel is on a mountain and there are hills on premesis, but if you cannot walk up these steep inclines, they have 24 hr service to pick you up in a golf-cart! We went on a sustainability tour and tortilla making tour which was so cool! Would definitely go again!

Room Tip: My sister and I stayed in an ocean view room which was amazing! We woke up to the sound of the ocean...
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  • Stayed October 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2013

We enjoyed our 2012 visit so much we decided to return to paradise one more time, and hopefully many more in the future too.
By far this resort is the best we have visited. The rooms are large and luxurious. Staff is remarkably friendly, knowledgable and remember your name from first time you meet them, some even from last year! You can be as lazy and relaxed as you want to be, under the palms on the beach, or adventurous as your body will allow. This year we zip-lined, kayaked thru the mangroves, visited a butterfly garden and went whale watching on jet skis! Also, As a former science teacher, really enjoyed the Sustainability tour of the resort itself and the extreme measures they take to earn and keep their 5 Leaf, like stars, environmental awards. Of course left time every other day, and most afternoons, for our daily rejuvenation on the beach. This place is way far and above "Top of the class". Will definitely be back, can't wait!

  • Stayed September 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
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, October 11, 2013
Dear Ichowig,
greetings from Manuel Antonio and Arenas del Mar. It was a great pleasure to have you back for a second visit this year. We appreciate your nice comments about your second stay with us. Thanks for your nice words about our sustainability program at the hotel. We are very proud to be Costa Rica's first hotel that achieved 5 Stars AND 5 Sustainability Leaves. And of course, there is nothing like our beach just a few steps from our room. I am glad you left time for some beach time every day. We very much look forward to your next visit with us. All the best,
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Greenville, South Carolina, United States
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 10, 2013

This was the perfect resort and area of Costa Rica to end our trip. The staff was wonderfully gracious, the food was superb, the scenery breathtaking, the accommodations delightful, and the spa/massages a touch of class. We highly recommend Arenas del Mar...wonderful location and beautiful place.

Room Tip: Choose the closest building to the main pool-3rd floor for the best view. For most privacy, furthes...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 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.
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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 Spa Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#2 Luxury Hotel in Manuel Antonio National Park
#2 On the Beach 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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