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“Quiet inexpensive hotel” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hotel El Tajalin

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Hotel El Tajalin
Frente al parque infantil, Montezuma, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #16 of 19 hotels in Montezuma
Newton, Massachusetts
1 review
“Quiet inexpensive hotel”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 15, 2011

We were on our honeymoon and wanted to check out Montezuma yet stay out of the hostels and this was the perfect place. It's right on the edge of town rather than right downtown which is nice since the main strip can be pretty noisy late night. 30 second walk to the downtown makes for a great location. It was the rainy season and 70$/night got us a huge room with a balcony and a safe. Open air lounge on the top floor with a TV and hammocks is a great place to hang out. The manager was extremely helpful and even took this picture for us.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 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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43 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (4)
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English first
New York City, New York
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 5, 2011

if i wasn't planning a long term sabbatical for my next visit to this amazing town, i would absolutely be staying here again! our room was on the third floor which made the lounge almost for our own personal use as there are not many rooms, so it is never crowded. the room was extrememly spacious, had a safe, and small fridge, with a huge shower in the bathroom, and a table with chairs. the 'closet area' was also large and had strong shelving to keep our luggage safe from critters! maid service is done daily and provides new towels, etc, the usual. the staff was SO SO nice, informative, helpful, and kind. always service with a smile.

the location is perfect, a walk across the park or down the street to the L shaped main center of montezuma, yet still quiet at night (as chico's can play their music pretty loud!) to get a good nights sleep. many reviews listed here had AC problems, or hot water problems, we did not at all. wifi worked great as well. and not sure where the other reviewer found that rhino beetle but we did not see one single bug in/around/at the hotel or our room the entire 9 days we were there. in costa rica, i consider us very very lucky!

we did not rent a car but parking is safe and easy just out front - and for anyone who needs to know we walked everywhere without a problem. didn't need a car except for our day trip to santa teresa and hike in cabo blanco park. EVERY other montezuma (waterfalls, playa grande, playa las manchas, ylang ylang resort, playa los cedros altho very far, playa de los artistas restaurant, any many more!) is walkable - including el chorro the waterfall but we took a horseride since the hike is about 2 hours.

the hotel can arrange tours, trips, and airport transfers for you if you need them to, (we didn't know that and booked in advance with zuma tours who were probably more expensive but great as well ). if u need a cab they will probably call johnny and he's great! or ask them to bc he was so nice and reasonably priced ($12 to cabo blanco park - which was about a 30 min ride).

if the staff reads these, thank u for everything and we hope u enjoyed the imperial! :)
we would absolutely reccomend this hotel to anyone looking for a pleasant stay in montezuma.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with friends
    • 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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San Antonio, Texas
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
30 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 3, 2011

We moved to this hotel after one night in another hotel which was so noisy because it was Saturday night and that hotel has walls that were half screened and is right on the road. Hotel El Tajalin is also on the same road, but with a wall along the back of the hotel, and complete walls in the rooms, the noise was not nearly as bad.
Pros of this hotel: air conditioning in the rooms; ceiling fans also in every room; location is in the center of town; nice 3rd floor terrace with TV, wi-fi, hammocks, tables and chairs; good shower; comfortable beds; quiet; very helpful staff
Cons of this hotel: breakfast not included, some rooms are located near coffee station where people gather early, bathroom (and supplies) are very basic, wi-fi doesn't work well in the rooms towards the back
This hotel is a good value for the price, the staff was very helpful (moving us to another room when we requested), and we had a good place to park our car along the street right in front of the hotel .
The rooms are basic hotel rooms without much character, but having a/c during the dry, hot, dusty season and being able to sleep at night without fearing a car was going to crash into our room was very appreciated.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Hotel_Tajalin, Manager at Hotel El Tajalin, responded to this review, November 3, 2011
Thanks for your review. As new hotel managers, we are dedicated to resolving any issues that have bothered previous guests.

We just installed a second router in the back of the hotel to enhance the wifi service throughout. There should be a good connection everywhere at this point.

We're also adding some character to the rooms with little touches here and there. I'm sure our current guests have already noticed a bit more color with plants, tapestries and more lounging areas throughout the common areas. We've added more chairs, tables and closets to several of the rooms and are soon to decorate with some new wall hangings as well.

Again, thanks for your suggestions. They've already made a difference. :)
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UK
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2010

My wife and I checked in to El Tajalin and the air conditioning didn't work in the first room. They moved us to a larger room for the same price, so we were happy.

The location is great, what with Montezuma being so small you can walk everywhere.

The only problem was that there was a lot of rubbish (mostly plastic bottles) on the beach so we left Montezuma early.

The staff, particularly the younger chap on reception, were helpful.

  • Stayed August 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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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Cambridge, MA
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2010

This place was decent- it was clean, quiet, and the owner was relatively friendly and helpful. The AC didn't work that great and the room was rather plain, but we stayed on the 3rd floor which was nice because I think it is the only room on the floor so it has a lot of privacy (but no view). Also there was a fridge in the room which really came in handy for storing cold water and breakfast food. The location was good if you want to be right in town without the noise of staying above/next to any of the bars. I think I would have preferred the similarly priced Hotel Lucy or Los Mangos which are about a 5 minute walk from town but right on the water.

  • Stayed April 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, WA
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 26, 2009

I have been to Costa Rica 11 times since 1989. I still try out other vacation destinations but every time I go to Mexico, Hawaii, Florida......ect, I always think, "wow, I could have gone to Costa Rica and had a better time!"

I first came across Tajalin back in 2001. I keep coming back. I love Montezuma. Costa Rica was a different country when I first started vacationing there. Manuel Antonio and Jaco were still small resort areas. Now, I don't want to go there for more than a day or two.

El Tajalin is a refreshing hotel from the past. They have a courteous and helpful staff that speak English. It has the charm that this country used to have before the increase of American tourism. I have stayed there 4 times and I cannot wait to return. The rooms are very clean, comfortable and affordable. The rooms I have stayed in have air conditioning, balcony's, safes and refrigerators. It is located a few yards from Chicos Bar and Luz De Mono as well as all of the eateries and shops in this small town. It is quiet in the evening and the beach is a short walk away.

During my 2nd stay there, I lost the key to my rental car. The owner arranged for the rental car company to fly a spare key from San Jose to nearby Tambor and then bussed them to Tajalin. They have also arranged numerous travel adventures for my friends and I including fishing trips, canopy zip-line tours and ATV rentals. All I do is ask and they will take care of my needs.

If you are a high maintenence traveler or a wild party person, this might not be the place to stay. If you are an experienced traveler and want a quality place to truly enjoy this very special town, you will be glad that you stayed at Tajalin. I have sent many friends there and they all have been very happy with my recommendation.

Clean, safe and courteous. I have taken many of my friends and my (then 12 year old son). We are all fans!

  • Liked — Couteous Clean Safe Affordable Friendly Comfortable
  • Disliked — Can't think of many reasons to not like it here.
  • Stayed December 2006, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Idaho
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2009

The reviews of this hotel are in general accurate. However one significant annoyance we had was the air conditioner in our room, first floor, was full of mold. The room only had one very small window. The weather was very hot, 97 degrees F and whenever we left the room and shut the door we returned to a very musty, moldy smell. We had to sleep with the door open at night, with the fan going to tolerate the thought of what we were breathing.
The hotel was full and they said they did not have another room. It is a long story why we did not pursue changing rooms on our 2 subsequent days so that is our responsibility. But I did want to mention this. Otherwise I must say that the staff was very kind and helpful and it is a good location. One more thing. After other towns Montezuma struck me as dirty, lots of litter and questionable thoughts about where the sewers empty. I suspect right into the ocean where we were swimming. This may be true in lots of the beach towns in CR. Next time I will try to stay in smaller towns to help minimize my impact. Eco-tourism, the very thing that draws people to this area, is having its negative consequences.
We loved El Sano Banano restaurant, super friendly and helpful staff. Yummy food. Lastly if you are going from Montezuma to San Jose via the ferry be sure to find out about the direct bus. I asked for the best and least expensive way to get to Alajuela And I gave the # I had from the Frommer's book. (I should have called this number myself and I regret I didn't, my bad.) We were told by the tour office in town And the hotel desk that "everybody charges $40." THIS IS NOT TRUE. When we got on the ferry we saw a large a/c tourist bus that left from Cobano (so you have to take a local bus (or taxi) to Cobano which should be easy, @ $2?) to catch this tour bus. The bus from Cobano to San Jose airport or Alajuela cost only $15 plus you do not have to change your luggage from one van, onto the ferry, off the ferry into another van. This is the only time in our 10 day trip when I felt ripped off. I heard from people whose daughter lives in Cobano that the hotels receive a cut for referring their guests. I don't have a problem with that, but to say it is the only way is only partly true.
It is a beautiful country, with very nice residents and we are very glad we went. 90% of the time was perfecto. Enjoy

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
Hotel_Tajalin, Manager at Hotel El Tajalin, responded to this review, October 22, 2011
Thank you for your review. Hotel El Tajalin is under new management as of Oct. 15, 2011 and we are taking all past reviews as learning tools to enhance the experience of our guests.

Mold can be a problem in Costa Rica in the rainy season, but there are steps that can be taken to solve the problem. Several of the older A/C units have been replaced. With other units, filters have been replaced and are now cleaned once a week to avoid any mold. We also have a rotation of a new dehumidifier in all downstairs rooms which had issues with mold in the past.

Please be assured that your complaint is being taken seriously and all steps are being taken to ensure that others will not repeat your moldy experience.

As for Montezuma being dirty, it's not. There is a robust garbage collection unit and a new recycling center nearby, doing our part to protect the environment. All beachside businesses found to have improper sanitation practices have been condemned in the past by the sanitation department and have only been allowed to reopen with better facilities.

The only garbage problem that irks some of us residents, is that plastics that float on the sea collect about 15 minutes walking north of the Montezuma beaches due to Nicoya Gulf currents. We hold beach cleanups after the rainy season to tidy up the place and hope that those who dispose of garbage improperly (mostly far from Montezuma) clean up their act soon!

Sorry the tour office in town may have lied to you. Our reception staff books tours and transportation for guests and have been instructed to be honest and forthcoming or they will lose their jobs. You can trust our receptionists to book anything you need and to give you all the information necessary to do so. Yes, the bus is a great way to go to SJ. One additional tidbit is that it leaves directly from Montezuma. No need to take a $10 taxi to Cobano.

Thanks again for your review.
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Additional Information about Hotel El Tajalin

Address: Frente al parque infantil, Montezuma, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Montezuma
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Shuttle Bus service Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 19 hotels in Montezuma
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A friendly hotel just a few steps from the beach with a/c, WiFi, wood floors, free coffee and a big common area with Tv/Dvd. All major cards accepted. A good choice if you want to stay amid the hustle and bustle of Montezuma. ... more   less 
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