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“Oasis in Costa Rica” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Ylang Ylang Beach Resort

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Ylang Ylang Beach Resort
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   Montezuma Beach | 10-12 minute walk North along the beach, Montezuma 00000, Costa Rica (Formerly El Sano Banano Beach Hotel)   |  
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Ranked #2 of 19 Hotels in Montezuma
Montreal
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Oasis in Costa Rica”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2008

Montezuma was not initially on our list of planned cities to visit in Costa Rica. Halfway through our trip we met a couple who had just come from the Ylang Ylang. They talked so admirable of the place that we had to see what it was all about. It was everything they promised and more!
From the moment we were greeted by Maurio in town we knew we would be well taken care of. Maurio is a gem! Xenio and the kitchen staff prepared some wonderful and delicious meals - It is obvious this cooking comes from the heart. Ricardo was a cool cat and ever so helpful. It was Ray's first day when we arrived. He is funny as he is friendly - a definite keeper! Everyone and everything from the stunning grounds to the location to the wildlife outside our window gave us the feel and 'Pura Vida' we were looking for in Costa Rica.
Especially you Mauria! You run the place seamlessly and with such sincere hospitality. Lui and I thank you for everything.
Our initial stay was meant for 2-3 days and we ended up staying for the week! Ylang Ylang felt like a second home - one we will definitely visit again!

  • Liked — Relaxed atmosphere, beautiful scenery, dedication to preserving Montezuma wildlife and land
  • Disliked — Nothing!
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank Tunes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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668 reviews from our community

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Denver, CO
Level Contributor
17 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2007

We spent 2 nights at the Ylang Ylang in Jungalow #5 this month (12/07). It is truly a beautiful setting near the very unique town of Montezuma. When you arrive you are driven to the beachside location (less than a 10 min walk) from Montezuma. There is a restaurant/bar with a great view of the water and a gorgeous pool.

The are 7 Jungalows, #1-4 are located closer to the beach and #5-7 are more in the jungle area. We were in #5 which had a lot more privacy than the others and still an ocean view. As others have mentioned this is not paradise if you are afraid of spiders, other creepy crawlies and potentially scorpians. We definitely had a few in the room with us. However there is netting around the beds allowing for you to make your jungalow as open air as you like. It's part of the charm that the wildlife can join you in your room if they like, seriously. And the setting otherwise, more than makes up for it.

You can wake up in the morning and walk right out on the beach. You can spend a morning like we did walking 2 hours to the waterfall or just 15 mins to the beautiful Playa Grande.

Both breakfast and dinner are included in the price and are delicious. The menu has a great selection of most anything you'd like, including sushi and vegan menus. The happy hour offers great deals on their many tropical drinks.

So now, the 'too good to be true?' part. Well we also happened to meet some locals while we spent our week in Montezuma. They happened to mention that most of them don't frequent the Ylang Ylang restaurant or the Sano Banano (also owned by the same Americans). The reason for this is that there have been some problems with where they dump their waste. And I have to say we became a little suspicous ourselves when we noticed that the water from our mini kitchen sink emptied right out into the lawn around our jungalow. There were also some rumors that the owners of the hotel built their own elaborate home on some protected lands. What does this all mean? We don't know exactly. And I feel bad for not pushing it while we were there. After all, these are all just rumors, and otherwise we did really enjoy our stay there. I guess it's just residual guilt, for we would not want to support an establishment these things were true about. Perhaps some future guest can do some more investigations for us.

  • Stayed December 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank denver_adventurer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Coronado, California
Level Contributor
4 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2007

My friend and I stayed in the Jungalows at Ylang-Ylang Resort and had an amazing time. The service was the best of anywhere we traveled the previos 2 weeks in Costa Rica. Mario was so friendly and willing to talk to about anything, Rey was the most amazing server and always knew what drink we were in the mood for that evening, and Moraya was not only friendly and helpful, but really went out of his way to make sure we had a good time. He recommended the Horse Back riding tour to the Florida Water and booked it around our schedule. It was teh BEST trip/tour we went on in all of Costa Rica. Montezuma and Ylang-Ylang were such a treat and I hope to get back there very soon. Out beds & pillows in the Jungalow were VERY comfortable and we had a blatst e-mailing our friends and fmaily about the "Jungalow" we stayed in. What a cute name. Did I mention the food yet? Oh My Gosh, it was absolutely AMAZING. The banana pancakes, tuna sanfwich, grilled veggie sandwich, Huevos Rancheros and catepillar roll were amazing and while we did visit other restaurants this and their sister restaurant El Sana Banana were by far the best overall food in town. I would highly recommend ANYONE to head to Ylang Ylang for a relaxing, beautiful and amazing vacation. We felt so spoiled after staying there that it was hard to go back home!

  • Liked — Incredible Service. I have traveled the world adn the service here was top notch!
  • Disliked — Raccoon, my friend is scared of them...but we enjoyed the place so much that it outweighted her fear.
  • Stayed December 2007, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank Wendig3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 6, 2007

First let me say, that Ylang Ylang Resort can't exactly be called luxury. If you can't imagine being up close and personal with nature (bugs, small crabs and maybe a monkey in or near your room), then this is not the place for you.
But if you are dreaming of a pristine beach, wild pristine rainforests and having wildlife as your neighbors, this is one of the most amazing resorts I've seen. I live in Costa Rica, and this is definitely one of the best lodging venues around. The quintessential Costa Rican escape, it also indulges hip bohemian lifestyles with organic cuisine, daily yoga sessions and unrelenting barefoot elegance.
If you are seeking a great place for a honeymoon, anniversary or romantic escape, you really can't do better than this. Candlelit dinners and walks on the beach are daily activities, and since you'll be constantly surrounded by bamboo and lush tropical foliage, privacy is king, allowing you to keep the doors and windows open to the fresh air and maybe a little nude sunbathing on your terrace.
Go with one of the beachfront domes - number 4 looks like the best they have.

  • Liked — The beach and ocean views are incredible.
  • Disliked — No screens on the windows is a little hard to deal with at night.
  • Stayed November 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank GoodVibes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oregon
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 8, 2007

Travling with our 7 year old son we wanted to feel safe (just from theft) and we wanted to feel we had everything we needed. Ylang Ylang had incredible service, internet (that really worked), grounds, awesome food (really!) and a fabulous pool etc. There is so much attention to detail. The rooms however are pretty basic and ours was very dark. I'd recommend being up a little since my partner had cutter ants nesting (complete with eggs) in his backpack after a couple of days! Big spiders in the room, as well as invisible pinching bugs (we heard come from the beach) etc. But what else can you expect on the jungle floor. Just go up a little. But EVERYTHING else was fantastic. They also helped with other bookings and travel to other regions. A huge help. We would recommend this hotel to anyone and especially those with kids looking for a place to sink in.

  • Liked — the service, food, and location
  • Disliked — the dark and ultra basic rooms.
  • Stayed August 2007, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
    • 4 of 5 stars
      Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
Thank anahata
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York, NY
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 4, 2007

It may be a little hard to get to the town of Montezuma if you a traveling by car. We had to take a ferry over from Puntarenas, which was a nice 1 hour break from driving!!
We arrived in Montezuma early afternoon. After checking in at the sister hotel, we walked the 10 minute walk down the beach to this hidden paradise.
All of the staff was excellent, especially Eduardo, who is you go to guy with any questions you have about Costa Rican nature and history.
The bungalow we stayed in was very private. I thought I would have a problem showering in the outside shower, but it was very private. The room was small, but the balcony was great for relaxing and listening to the ocean.
The food was excellent, and inclusive for breakfast and dinner. The menu had many different options, but I would recommend trying a seafood dish!!
The resort offers massages and yoga classes, and will also plan you trip to Isla Tortuga. There were capuchin monkeys everwhere!!
If you are going to stay in Montezuma, stay here. It is the priciest place in town, but well worth it!!

  • Stayed March 2007, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank hpreyes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
America
Level Contributor
24 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2007

I must say that I really loved this place. Keep in mind though you need to do your homework and know as best you can what you are getting. I found this place in Frommer's book on Costa Rica and it sounded "Enchanting" and Unique. I got my reservation in and then started finding reviews on it. I will say that after reading negative reviews I was really upset and didn't want to go there. I contacted the hotel via e-mail and Moraya answered all my questions and was always returning my e-mails. The negative comments just helped me know what to expect. It was up to me if I was going to let those things ruin my trip or make it an adventure. I chose to make it an adventure. Some of the negative comments you might hear is the ocean is so loud you can't sleep. True! The ocean is very loud. That is what to expect though when you are sleeping in front of it. Solution: ear plugs. I just popped mine in at night and slept fine. My husband did not sleep as well becuase he chose not to wear ear plugs. The monkey over our bungalow also kept him up. How cool is that though to have monkeys around your bungalow. There are these purple crabs everywhere too. At first when I saw them I was stunned. There were so many but really you get use to them fast and they are more scared of you and get out of your way. They are all over the beach too. They are very colorful though. There can also be bugs. We had one night, after a big rain storm (that was really loud but really cool) and that really brings on the bugs. They didn't bother us much and the mosquito netting did a good job at keeping them out. The bungalow itself was quite cute. It is true that the beds are small and a bit hard. I decided though that you give and take and just deal with some things. The bathroom inside the bungalow does not have a door on it, just hangy things, which are a cute decor for the room but I would have preferred a door on the bathroom. We never had a problem with the pool being too crowded, we found it to be really nice and loved the waterfall. We loved the restaurant and the food too. The scenery is beautiful with a great ocean view and the food is very tasty-best meal I ate in Costa Rica and George our waiter was so great. We took a sunset tour while we were there and loved it! Eduardo was great and we had a fun time. Also if you ask where the secluded beach is (I think it is Playa Grande) -go there. It is about a 25 minute walk from Ylang-Ylang. It is beautiful and you can play in the ocean. We were the only two in site at the ocean there for about 1 1/2 hours. That was fun. Suggestion-get up early (like 7:00 am) and go there. The sun sets early in Montezuma and rises early. I would highly recommend this hotel for anyone looking for a romantic adventure. Just go with an open mind. Have fun and enjoy the beauty that is there. The staff is excellent as well. I would also recommend the ferry over the plane if you get motion sick easy. We rode the ferry over, which was nice, and took the plane back. The plane was much quicker of course but I got so sick and threw up a lot. So try out Ylang-Ylang, it is an adventure never to be forgotten!

  • Stayed April 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Value
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Location
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Vaction_7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Ylang Ylang Beach Resort

Address: Montezuma Beach | 10-12 minute walk North along the beach, Montezuma 00000, Costa Rica (Formerly El Sano Banano Beach Hotel)
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Montezuma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 Romantic Hotel in Montezuma
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Montezuma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates):
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Ylang Ylang Beach Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This family-owned resort is known for its natural tropical beauty, variety of wildlife roaming the grounds and outstanding customer service. Located a 10-15 minute walk on the beach from Montezuma, one will find romantic Beach Front Bungalows with A/C, a Spa nestled in the jungle, and a tropical pool edged by waterfalls. If you're looking to get away, this is the getaway place. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Ylang Ylang Beach Hotel Montezuma
Ylang Beach Hotel
Ylang Beach Resort

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