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“Great eco-vacation. High on experience, low on luxury.” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Montezuma Beach Houses

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Montezuma Beach Houses
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500 metros norte de la Escuela, Montezuma, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Seattle, Washington
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great eco-vacation. High on experience, low on luxury.”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 2, 2012

I think that, in general, the Montezuma area is ideal for someone who is interested in a “get back to nature” or “get in touch with the local culture” kind of experience. It is a perfect location for an eco-vacation. If you are looking for a surf experience then Montezuma is perfect. But if you are looking for a luxury vacation then go somewhere else.

I loved my visit to Montezuma. There were no crowds, no tourists, the people we wonderful, there was no crime, no cheap t-shirt shops selling crap, none of that.

I thought the weather was great, I loved the authentic experience...and I could not get enough of the local produce. You won’t get better tasting fruits or vegetables anywhere!! My friends and I zip-lined, rode horses on the beach, rented ATVs, bought local craft items in town, and generally enjoyed ourselves.

But at none of the local hotels, hostels, or homes did we ever experience anything that anyone would call luxury. I think that the general standard of luxury in Costa Rica is much lower than we would experience in the US.

I booked the villa at the Montezuma Beach Houses, in part, because the word luxury was used several times in the description on the website--and the pictures looked great. And also I wanted the privacy of a residence rather than a hotel. But it was neither luxurious or private by US standards.

Montezuma Beach Houses are charming, rustic, homey, relaxing, and cozy. I do not want to turn you off in any way. We really enjoyed our stay and would considering going back again. THIS PLACE IS TOTALLY WORTH A VISIT. YOU'LL LOVE IT. YOU JUST NEED TO MANAGE YOUR EXPECTATIONS WITH RESPECT TO THE WORD 'LUXURY'.

There are some things that the owners could do to improve the overall experience.

I always try to paint a very clear picture when I write a review of any kind. I don’t want to overstate the pros or understate the cons. I just want to be honest and clear.

Below is a list of my issues:

+++There is absolutely no privacy. The owner and members of her family were in and out of the house and the immediate area multiple times each day. They hang out in the back of the house on the carport, walk through to get items from the storage area, come in to get things from within the house, etc.
++There is constant foot traffic in front of the house on the little public road. People wander on to the property no realizing that it is a private house and locals selling things also come by every day.
+++The grounds are generally well kept but lots of the trees have dead branches or palms hanging down and some plants look like they really need to be pruned. Many of the plants are very overgrown and causing problems with the pavement, etc. I think they are going for much more of a wild and real look rather than a manicured look.
+++There are many, many tiles missing from the swimming pool; the lounge chairs and cushions are weathered and worn.
+++Many of the outdoor lights and the outdoor speakers (for music) do not work.
+++The gas stove and range in the kitchen doesn’t get much of a flame so it takes a long time to cook anything. The outdoor cooking area works much, much better. We ended up grilling a lot.
+++The outside dining table is beautiful!!! But the chairs are old and worn and the cushions are as well.
+++The furnishings are fine. Nice and comfortable. But the beds upstairs are queen-sized but in a king frame--so there is a huge, weird gap at the ends of the beds between the mattress and the frame.
+++The only washing machine on the property is on the back porch of the villa in plain site of the pool, the outside dining area, etc. So the caretakers, other visitors, etc. are doing laundry right where you are hanging out.
+++The laundry for all of the three homes on the property is hung to dry right outside the back of the villa within plain view of the swimming pool. So you get to look at the owner’s underwear drying while you sit by the pool.
+++The quality of the bed linens and towels is very, very poor. The are old, worn and stained. And since all of the items are line-dried they are not at all soft---are very rough, in fact. Just making the investment in really nice linens and towels would improve the entire experience ten fold.
+++Many of the outlets, lights and switches in the house do not work.
+++All of the metal bathroom and kitchen fixtures are a little bit corroded.
+++The wireless internet service is fine when it works.
+++The short path from the house to the beach has some garbage, broken glass, and lots of driftwood in the way. No one from either the Montezuma Beach Houses, the local village, or the government takes any responsibility for cleaning up the beach.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Boston, Massachusetts
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 27, 2012

This was my families second year renting at this property, this year we spent 12 unforgettable nights at The Beach House. The location of these homes are truly special, as evidenced by the number of people walking on the beach who point at the grounds and stop to take in its loveliness. We love the location and being right on beach and a few minutes walk from downtown, but also the grounds and homes are unique and spectacular. The gardens, wild life, pool area and outdoor kitchen are beautiful. My 6 year old son many days had to be "dragged" to the beach because he loved exploring around the homes. There were fresh birds of paradise flowers in a vase awaiting us on our first day in the house. The house has everything that is needed to relax and take in the scenery. We had all of our meals at the house (except for 2!) because the ambiance of listening to the waves and sitting outside on the beautiful patio cannot be beat. Karen and George, the owners, made us feel right at home and are helpful in every way. They truly have a gift of hospitality and so many great tips on the area. We have already booked for next year and can't wait to get back to Montezuma!

  • Stayed February 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2012

We were lucky to stay at this house for 8 nights. We spent most of our time out on the porch, where we ate most of our meals, napped on the hammock, hung out with our house cat "blanco." The house was cozy and the views were amazing. It was the best feeling waking up and falling asleep to the sounds of the ocean. The house was located really close to Montezuma main st where there are tons of little cafes, shops, restaurants, and a couple of bars. The only thing at the house that could use a little improvement would be the shower downstairs, it was awful, and we all ended up having to use the master bedroom shower. I would come back to this house any time and recommend it to any friends that are looking for a relaxing place to visit. I look forward to visiting Costa Rica again very soon. i loved every minute. Another little tip is to spend time in Santa Teresa, its about 20 mins away and its a great beach to swim and eat. We ate a little restaurant called Piedra del Mar, the food was cheap and awesome. Go there! i loveeeeeeeee Costa Rica, PURA VIDA!!!!

Room Tip: get a house!!! don't stay in a hotel. PURA VIDA, ENJOY every minute!!!
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  • Stayed February 2012, 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
    • 3 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.
Seattle
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2012

We have a 15 year old and a 11 year old and stayed here during the kids holiday break in December 2011. Great house , pool , kitchen with everything you even think you might need.
On site caretaker to help with any questions you might have.
DVD and internet for evening relaxing for the kids while we hung out on the veranda or by our pool. The beach is right in front of the house so you hear and see the waves 24/7.
Five to ten minute walk into town for ice cream and movies or groceries. The owners provide referals for massage, surfing guide/lessons etc....
owners are living in the states and always available by email for any questions.
Just the total package....safe, fun, quiet and beautiful.... we would return here in a second

Room Tip: all three are great
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2012

Montezuma Beach Houses are a great holiday rental location. The houses are located on an amazing stretch of beach and about a half hour walk from Playa Grande and about a 7 minute walk to Montezuma.
The houses are in very good shape and have all the amenities needed for a great vacation. The property is very well maintained as are the homes.
The property is owned by Karen Harrison and we were fortunate to have her on site while we were there. She is a gracious hostess and provided us with great restaurant recommendations as well as invaluable tips on how to make the most of our stay in Montezuma. Her staff, Gitza and Oldimar are excellent and will do everything possible to make your stay a happy one.
Each morning you are awaken to the sounds of howler monkeys, all variety of birds and the sound of the ocean - it couldn't get any better!
I don't want to overpromise in my review of this location as everyone has different expectations but the reality is - this is a first rate rental property - everything is in good repair, all appliances and fixtures work, the water is drinkable, the units are clean and fresh towels and linens are provided half way through the week. If you need anything just ask the staff or Karen and they will do whatever they can to make sure your needs are met.

Room Tip: The Treehouse is small but comfortable and ideally suited to 4 guests. The other two locations are l...
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pemberton, Canada
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2012

Accommodation doesn't get better than this. I whole heartedly recommend Montezuma beach houses to anyone in the area. Our small family stayed in the Beach House this past Fall, and the pictures on the website are great, but don't do this place justice. It is beautifully constructed and landscaped. This amazing getaway and it is right on the Montezuma beach. It is quite lovely being just a little bit out of town. Very close to all the amenities of town (5 minute walk) and also 20 minutes from Playa Grande. (Great surfing.)

The house is fully set up with everything you need. There's an infinity pool, air conditioning, stocked kitchen (which is nice to have some meals in), outdoor BBQ/grilling area, ice machine, hammocks, sea turtle refuge just outside, and the constant soothing sound of the ocean. It is a perfect getaway for anyone, couple, family or large group!

  • Stayed November 2011, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Jacksonville, Florida
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 30, 2011

We stayed here for one night and it just was not what we expected. Did not get the house we wanted or reserved. Very small house with a long walk to town and to our car. Did not like having our rental car so far away with crime higher in the beach areas. Moved to Santa Teresa the next day beautiful beaches and nicer town.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Montezuma Beach Houses

Address: 500 metros norte de la Escuela, Montezuma, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Montezuma
Amenities:
Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 17 Specialty lodging in Montezuma

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