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“VACA IN MONTEZUMA” 4 of 5 stars
Review of El Sano Banano Village Hotel

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El Sano Banano Village Hotel
3.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Main Road - Town Center, Montezuma, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #7 of 19 Hotels in Montezuma
port charlotte, fl.
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“VACA IN MONTEZUMA”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 13, 2012

My wife and I stayed at El Sano Banano for 9 nights, We had breakfast there evey day, with many daily choices, it was allways very good. we had several dinners there also, each better than the last, which was hard to do !!! Amy, Martene, and ALL the staff we the best !! The rooms are nice and clean. Big warm shower, but small bathroom. Only one problem wifi did not work for beans.Ihad 2 smart phones & 2 lap tops, had wifi maby 3 minutes in 9 days. all else was great, especially breakfast out back, huge blue birds, beautiful red-brown squirles, and iguanas shared our food.

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YlangYlangManagement, Manager at El Sano Banano Village Hotel, responded to this review, May 15, 2012
We are very happy to hear that you had such a great time at our hotel and that you enjoyed the restaurant so much!
Our internet provider was having some serious issues which took them about 10 days to repair, this only affected a couple places in town and unfortunately we were one of them. We kept trying to fix the problem internally but were not able to as it was not something we could repair...
The issue has been repaired and our internet is up and running as well as usual.
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143 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (28)
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montreal
Top Contributor
73 reviews 73 reviews
33 hotel reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2012

I've been visiting montezuma since 1992, stayed at el sano banano, 6 times total, and quality price service is the best. The bed and breakfast is simple but clean , air condition , safe, the food is awesome, service is personal and they make you feel like home. The hotel is center, so you are next to the groceries, near all the action and restaurants, well isolated ( noise) The ylang ylang is 10-15 min walk on the beach, unless you are not in shape. anyway when you go to the beach as Playa Grande, or Cocalitos you still have to walk in front of ylang ylang where you can have lunch , enjoy the swimming pool, the food is pricey but delicious.

Beeing downtown is helpfull to be close to walk to the cascade, take the bus to visit around,

Now they have a galery , terrase outside so you can eat surround by trees, less noisy than front street side.

We always feel welcome and i certainly return, even if Montezuma is more crowded, comparing to 92

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 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
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Atlanta, Georgia
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 March 31, 2012

I spent 5 nights at el sano banano on a girls trip with three girlfriends. The rooms arent huge or elaborate but for the price, they were great. Also, the location cant be beat. A short walk from the beach and right in the main street in the middle of Montezuma "town," with a short walk to lots of great restaurants and little shops. The breakfast every morning is included and delicious!!! El Sano Banano's sister resort, Ylang Ylang, is a short beach-front walk away and is beautiful. Nice pool/beachfront/great food and happy hour drinks. Also we saw a TON of monkeys on the Ylang Ylang property! The staff at both hotels are GREAT - very friendly, helpful, and were great with coordinating our excursions. If you are looking for price, location, good food, and excellent customer service - el sano banano is for you!!

Room Tip: The rooms vary in size greatly. We lucked out and got a room with a huge window overlooking the bre...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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New York City, New York
Senior Contributor
36 reviews 36 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2012

When we arrived the staff showed us to our room and it was smaller than we had hoped with just two double beds. There were three of us with big backpacks so we decided to check to see if they could give us a bigger room. They were able to accomodate us so we were very happy. The new room was much bigger and we each had our own bed. It's a no frills room but it suited us just fine since we weren't spending much time there. One night we were falling asleep and then we heard a loud chirping sound in the room. We almost had a heart attack! We all jumped out of our beds to investigate and found a gecko. Who knew they made that sound! Breakfast is delicious and I highly recommend the banana pancakes. One bird kept flying down taking sugar packets and then one of them started landing on my head. After the second time, I opted to eat inside. Dinner was delicious too. We went to use the facilities at Ylang Ylang every day and loved it. I also took salsa lessons there and the teacher was excellent. The monkeys came to visit the pool every day so we got some great shots. One of them almost got away with one of our bags though! He helped himself to our potato chips instead. The last day we left at 6am and they provided us tea/coffee and fresh banana bread for breakfast. We want to send a special thank you to Martin for all his help during our stay there. The only problem is the aforementioned bird tapped on our window every morning at 7am! She was a serious pain in the ...but we are very happy we stayed here. Great value when you use the facilities at Ylang Ylang.

Room Tip: We stayed in the room on the top floor in the back and that is where the bird liked to visit early m...
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Alajuela, Costa Rica
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 12, 2012

The hotel is nice but really simle. They say that you can use Ylang Ylang pool and installations. What they never mention is that you have to walk about 30 minutes to get there on a lonely-dark path.
Rooms are quite small and have no ventilation at all. It was certainly clean, but I am sure you can get better for the price.
Breakfast is really awsome!.

  • Stayed March 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 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.
YlangYlangManagement, Manager at El Sano Banano Village Hotel, responded to this review, March 14, 2012
In response to your recently posted comments, we are very happy to read the many positives you mention: “The hotel is nice… it was certainly clean…(and) breakfast is really awesome!”

Regarding your concern: “a little bit expensive” is a subjective way to openly criticize a 22 year running business that humbly provides the best possible prices for outstanding services with free included pool and other services in our unique and amazing beach front location: Ylang Ylang Beach Resort. The Ylang Ylang Beach Resort is located on the beach as it’s name mentions, it is only a leisurely 10 minute walk from El Sano Banano Village Hotel and Restaurant on the beach or jungle road (perhaps more if you stop to take pictures of the beautiful surroundings). During daylight this is a very simple walk as well as at night (only that a flashlight may be needed).

We work very hard and have been for many decades constantly maintaining and improving a small family business which started from literally nothing. Years of hard work and dedication have allowed our El Sano Banano Village Hotel and Restaurant to blossom.

We strive on making our guests feel welcome and comfortable!

We sincerely apologize for the parts of your stay that you deemed unfavorable but are happy to hear that you enjoyed the rest so much! Thank you for those comments.
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Anacortes, Washington
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 29, 2012

I planned our entired trip based on tripadvisor reviews, which were almost entirely accurate. El Sano Banano was the one and only exception for our trip last week.

If there was just one or two problems, I don't think I would complain much. However, I have very little to say that is positive about our experience there.

Our first shock came when we drove into Montezuma. Obviously that is not what is being reviewed here, but it was much more of an "armpit" than I expected. Once we finally found a place to park (and there is almost no parking available for this hotel as we were led to believe), we walked to the check-in desk. When someone finally came over to us, they did so just to show us a booklet of the "bad guys" to watch out for in this town. That should have been a red flag. That person left and we stood there about 15 more minutes while workers walked by us. I finally interrupted someone so we could check in. It was very unorganized. After they finally found our reservation, I asked about the parking situation, and he said he'd meet us in the back to show us where to park. My husband went out to the car, and this guy just disappeared and started helping other people. I interrupted and asked again about the parking, and he walked me up to our room instead. When I pushed about showing us where to park, he finally walked out there and said maybe tonight there would be a spot. We had to "create our own" parking spot on the street in a town where theft is common. Ugh.

So we went up to the room where there was one towel and an empty soap dispenser. It was musty and hot and the airconditioner was not working properly (we finally got new batteries for the remote, but still never worked right). The room just felt "gross." Internet connection (from our room anyway) barely worked, and not even all the time. There were literally no power outlets other than the one the TV was plugged into. Nothing even in the bathroom. No cups or glasses to drink from. No fan in the bathroom. REALLY bare bones.

Then I realized it is OK if this room is worse than expected, since we stayed here to use Ylang Ylang facillities. I asked at the desk how to get there. They said we had to walk and to just show them our key when we got there. I thought no problem, and we started off in the direction they pointed. The problem was that we couldn't see where it was, so we asked someone on the street. They gave us more directions, which I double checked with a third person. So we walked for maybe a quarter mile and saw nothing, and the trail ended on the beach. By now it was getting dark, I was really sweatty and bug-bitten, and I turned on my phone to look at a map. My iphone made it look like we had passed it, so we walked back toward town. Nothing. I asked some other people, and they said "follow us." By now it was dark, but at least they had a flashlight. It is a LONG ways away from El Sano Banano. We walked it ,and yes Ylang Ylang was beautiful. We went and sat at the bar where we told happy hour was over (did we look like we only came for happy hour?). That wasn't a big deal, but I thought she could have made an exception of 5 minutes due to our story. She said "oh, they usually bring you over in a jeep." Oh, that would have been nice to know. So we had our expensive drink (of course my first choice of drink was not available), all the while not feeling like we belonged there--there was a bit of attitude toward us, like street people wandered in (and trust me, we didn't look like we belonged in Montezuma! :) So, we used the pool briefly. We asked about a jeep back, but they made it clear that was only if we ate dinner there. So we walked back in the pitch black dark.

Thank goodness we had plans to be away all the next day because the room was miserable. It did not feel clean or safe, and it is not for the clausterphobic. The walls were thin, and we could hear people partying all around. We felt stuck in a room, and it was the only time in our whole trip where I felt ripped off and deceived.

When we first arrived, we asked about breakfast times since we had to leave at 6am for a tour. We were told that they could provide "something" for us at this hour, even if small. We said that sounds great. However, when we asked at about 6:10, they looked at us like we were crazy, and said there was no way since people were just arriving for work. It just would have been nice to have been told the truth...that would have been no big deal. It is just annoying saying they will do something, when it isn't true. If breakfast is impossible at 6 am just say so! Contrary to what this review may sound like, we aren't difficult or demanding people.

The one redeeming point was the restaurant that night (and the next morning). We ate there our second night and it was great. Breakfast was included which was good, and the restaurant service was very good (we had the same waiter for dinner and breakfast--I wish I remembered his name).

Soo....I do not recommend El Sano Banano. It is probably the only place on our whole trip that I wouldn't visit again.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
YlangYlangManagement, Manager at El Sano Banano Village Hotel, responded to this review, March 1, 2012
In response to your recently posted comments, we are truly sorry about how you feel and appreciate you taking the time to write your review as it will only helps us improve in the parts were we may have failed you.

Years of hard work and dedication have allowed our El Sano Banano Village Hotel and Ylang Ylang Beach Resort to blossom into an oasis of serenity located in town and on a beachfront jungle.

Each village, town and city in the world is unique, we encourage everyone to enjoy each one for what that have to offer.

As for your delayed waits, we apologize as this is not a normal occurrence as our staff always tries to assist everyone as quick as possible and we have received great reviews about our staff. As for parking, we offer limited free parking, and are sorry we were unable to immediately accommodate you. As for our rooms, we offer comfort and security in a simple form for great value, we maintain high housekeeping standards. El Sano Banano Village Hotel is a small quaint low priced family run hotel, for more luxurious accommodations we recommend our Ylang Ylang Beach Resort (which has a variety of extra amenities).

The walk between El Sano Banano Village Hotel and Ylang Ylang Beach Resort is simple and only takes 10-12 min: go down one road for 20 yards, take a left at the “T”, walk 100 yards to the “Y” in the road (next to Bookstore) and take a right, walk 25 yards to end of road where beach begins. Walk on the beach for about 8-10 min, and you will find Ylang Ylang Beach Resort (the only hotel on the beach)-it is impossible not to find. Montezuma is a town of 3 roads; there are very few options for getting lost. For future reference, upon inquiry, we do offer limited shuttle rides from El Sano Banano to Ylang Ylang Beach Resort and back for anybody (from any hotel) with confirmed dinner reservations.

We happily offer a breakfast to go anytime after 6:00am, unfortunately there was a communication error between our night shift and morning shift. We have set up a new system to avoid this from happening to future guests.
El Sano Banano Village Hotel has been rated one of the best choices in Montezuma, by many, for over 20 years and we are sorry that you did not have this experience.

We strive on making our guests feel welcome and comfortable!

We pride ourselves on the fact that the best customer service is achievable at all moments for all guests. We appreciate guests who appreciate our tremendously hard work and years of dedication.

We sincerely apologize for the parts of your stay that you deemed unfavorable but are happy to hear that you enjoyed the rest so much!
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Kelowna, Canada
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 17, 2012

Well . . we made it from the north to the southern most tip of the Nicoya penninsula. We are now staying in the mythical 'hippie' village of Montezuma Beach. I doubt this place has changed much since the 60s. The people and their way of life is like a step back in time to the kinder gentler times of our youth. Just amazing!

We will only be here for three days but are making the most of it. Today we strolled the beach to discover the local monkeys and finsihed in a beachside bar with cold beer over a game of Dominoes.

Tonight it is dinner and a movie in the restaurant below our room. I think we finally found the real Costa Rica.

The staff of the El Sano Banano are the best you could hope for. The accommodation is basic but it is the cleanest we have found in Costa Rica yet (5 weeks in country so far). By the way - the food here is really good and the prices are very reasonable.

For seasoned treavellers who yearhave themn for a great travel memory - put this stop on your agenda. You can fly in to Tambor and have them meet you at the airport or you can drive to PuntArenas and take the ferry over to the penninsula or you can catch an open fast boat from Jaco.

This is the first place in Costa Rica that has my wife and I thinking a return trip may be worth think about.

  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
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Additional Information about El Sano Banano Village Hotel

Address: Main Road - Town Center, Montezuma, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Montezuma
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 19 Hotels in Montezuma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — El Sano Banano Village Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on the main street in the heart of Montezuma, this hotel offers 11 comfortable rooms that are economically priced just a block from the beach. The rooms are above the well-known restaurant and have A.C., hot showers and SkyTV. The rooms are quiet and secure for those who prefer in-town comfort. Breakfast is included and the hotel guests are welcome to use the pool and hammocks at Ylang Ylang Beach Resort, just a 10-12 minute walk on the beach from Montezuma. ... more   less 
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