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“This is my happy place” 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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Hotel amenities
Ranked #1 of 19 Hotels in Montezuma
JAMoUSA
Senior Contributor
26 reviews 26 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“This is my happy place”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 21, 2013

My husband and I decided to celebrate our 10-year anniversary by traveling to the Ylang Ylang Beach Resort. We were a little nervous, because it is an adventure just getting to the location. St. Louis to Miami and Miami to San Jose. We then walked next door to this rinky dinky "air port" to fly on a 12-passenger plane to Tambor air strip. The resort had a driver waiting for us there (Eduardo). The drive was a very bumpy 45 minutes. We were delivered safely to the sister Hotel the Sano Banana. We immediately loaded into a SUV, driven by Eric, that took us on a very short, but very rugged drive to the resort. Whew! I must admit though, I felt a little like Indiana Jones:-)

Rapha was there waiting for us with fresh squeezed juice. It was a warm welcome. The grounds are outstanding! The staff was over the top friendly and helpful. We made many friends with the Ylang Ylang "family". All the workers spoke highly of the establishment and the management. They all talked how lucky they were to work there and how well they are treated. They took great pride in their jobs and working for Ylang Ylang.

The food was the best I have ever had on vacation. Three words: fresh, organic and quality! The blackened tuna with mango sauce was my favorite. We also enjoyed the frozen drinks immensely. Instead of using ice to water down the drinks, they used frozen fruit. The Monkey Business drink was my favorite. The wait staff became our friends quickly. They also helped us sharpen our spanish at each meal. They were great teachers. Thank you, Cristian, Rapha and Patricia.

The front desk was always helpful. They helped us book our day trips and get us back into our room when we locked ourselves out—daily. Always with a smile! One day we asked if there was someplace we could buy a coconut to drink from, within 5 minutes the gardener was out our door slicing a coconut open for us—a highlight of the trip.

Eduardo was our driver and guide for part of the trip. He brought us pure joy. He is an outstanding tour guide and naturalist. He even took pictures of our trips and sent us home with all the photos. We learned many things from him. Our favorite thing was our trip to Curu, a wildlife preserve.

We stayed in the jungle bungalow number 6. White-faced monkeys came every day around 4 PM. We could hear the holler monkeys, but they never came close enough to see. The grounds are loaded with crazy looking squirrels, crabs, lizards and other critters. We loved it. The room itself had everything we needed: bed, shower, and wonderful view. There is no TV or phone, but that is what we loved about it.

The only complaint is the pool was a little chilly for my family's taste. However, I spent the majority of my time at the resort in a hammock reading and drinking Monkey Business, so no harm.

We look forward to our return!

Room Tip: If you enjoy wildlife book a jungle bungalow.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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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533 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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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
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (151)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 9, 2013

While I could never get the pronunciation, this place is incredible! I went for a wedding- and everything was perfect. The staff took such great care of our group, we hugged them when we left (never hugged a waiter after a vacation!). The only negative- the undertow is so strong that it's not really possible to swim in the ocean, but the pool was nice. We were there when the colorful crabs were out (early May)-- I recommend going to see them, but it's hot at that time of year. I felt so refreshed after my vaction here!

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
Riverside, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2013

Stayed here for 4 nights for a friend's wedding. Staff is beyond friendly, and will bend over backwards to make your stay enjoyable. Amazing natural beauty all around the resort. Great hiking opportunities near by. Delicious food on site. Totally unplug and enjoy the surroundings, or plug back in for a little bit and head back into town for a fun night of drinking and dancing at Chicco's. You will make lifelong memories on your trip here!

Room Tip: The private bungalows are very nice, and more private. But if you are on a budget don't think y...
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  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Dayton, Ohio
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2013

The most beautiful setting and great food. Plenty of wildlife. If you stay here, get a dome/cabin. The staff is friendly and the pool is in a nice shady area. They do seem to allow visitors to use their pool if they are buying drinks, which was kind of a drag, but other than that it was quiet. Check in at Sano banana in town and they drive you in from there. You can't drive your own vehicle back to the hotel, the road ends and only a hummer will make it there. There is no signage directing you to this place.

Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 25, 2013

Here's the most important thing I've written on Tripadvisor - do not try to drive to thsi hotel. Our GPS gave driving directions which ended on the beach, where our 4WD rental got stuck! We'd probably still be there if not for the kindness of the Ticos helping us out. So, ignor the GPS (which is essential for driving in CR) and go to the El Sano Banano hotel in town and register there. Then they'll pick you up and drive you in an appropriate vehicle to this remote hotel.

Now, the hotel itself is really nice. There's a very good restaurant with vegetarian, vegan, sushi and standard fare. Dinner and breakfast were both included with our rooms and all meals were very good. There' a nice pool here and you're also beachside so there's plenty of opportunity to wear your bathing suit. There's also a spa here which we didn't take advantage of.

We had a "dome" cabana which had a nice patio on the ocean. The rooms had a/c and wifi worked well throughout the resort. The dome itself was clean and comfortable, just a little odd but at least it was out of the ordinary. We also had a room in their hotel portion and it was big with a loft and 3 beds. The hotel room also had a beachfront balcony - this was room 6 out of 6. The first 3 rooms are on ground level and the second 3 are above with balconies instead of patios, with better views.

We booked a horseback riding tour through the front desk that went along the beach to a remote beach waterfall. The trip was pretty cool but the tour guide spoke little english and treated his horses poorly. We also hiked to the Montezuma waterfalls which are only about a mile away and definitely worth the time. It was very peaceful and I was the only one on the trail for most of my early morning hike. The beach here is pretty nice but rocky in places, so you need to be careful when swimming, boarding, etc.

The staff was very freindly with good service. In particular, Eric, who will transport you to and from the hotel was exceptionally helpful, friendly and cheerful. The restaurant staff was also very attentive - always a concern with an inclusive type arrangement.

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled with family
    • 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Zurich, Switzerland
Top Contributor
256 reviews 256 reviews
70 hotel reviews
Reviews in 80 cities Reviews in 80 cities
103 helpful votes 103 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2013 via mobile

This resort is very calm and located a short walking distance from town - while mostly honeymooners come here, it's a nice place to kick back and relax. The waiters are friendly and make sure you don't leave hungry. The wine list is confusing and wines that sound similar by name - do not cost the same as it states on the list. The reception staff can be helpless with certain demands - but ultimately you get what you request. Still the tranquility here is a great compromise with nature. The walk into town in the evenings needs to be facilitated by flashlights and takes up to 15 minutes. Thank you for being so helpful during our visit

Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Charlotte, North Carolina, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 20, 2013

The Ylang Ylang Beach Resort is the perfect place to relive yourself of the hassles of modern life, without sacrificing any creature comforts.

The location alone make the traveler feel like they have made an accomplishment simply by arriving. The town of Montezuma is relatively remote, and the road getting there is lousy, but the laid back feeling and beautiful beaches make it all worth the trip!

Perhaps to most welcome surprise about staying at the Ylang Ylang was the quality of the food, and attention to detail of the waitstaff. I left there with the felling that it was like a visit to a private home, with the kitchen of this resort really being the heart of the matter. The restaurant does daily, well thought out, and perfectly prepared meals, you can sense a great deal of pride is coming from the staff!

After one night in the conventional hotel room, we decided to take an upgrade and move into one of the little private bungalows. These little architectural marvels were just too cool to resist! The beachfront location coupled with a very active and whimsical jungle scene have made for many lasting memories. I would highly recommend booking a private bungalow when stay at the Ylang Ylang!

Really this place offers just about everything that a traveler could want in a resort. The location offers a wide array of rugged coast line combined with long stretches of virtually uninhabited beaches. The town is a funky and eclectic mix, and the local nature and waterfalls can't be beat!
Just keep and an open mind and a willingness to explore, you'll be sure to find something to remember.

  • Stayed April 2013, 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

Review collected in partnership with this hotel

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 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)
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Montezuma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Montezuma
#1 Romantic 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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