The decision to stay at Michael's was an easy one - The reasonable rates and the location! When my girlfriend and I checked in, we were a little disappointed that the pool was under construction (it should be finished now), but the beach was literally right across the street. The water temperature in May was absolutely amazing! Michael recommended taking the Calypso Cruise leaving from Victoria Park, approximately 1/2 a mile from the hotel, and ended up being the most memorable part of our stay in Costa Rica. During our four day stay, we had just enough time to relax, check out several of the restaurants and bars in Puntarenas, and make our way back to the airport.
So what? Puntarenas is conveniently located a short ferry ride from the Nicoya peninsula (the ferry departs three blocks from the hotel) where there are plenty of things to see, and is about a 1.5 hour drive from Quepos and the Manuel Antonio National Park. If you are looking for pleasant and economical lodging, Michael's Surfside Hotel allows you to save a little cash. If you are looking for an all-inclusive resort, the DoubleTree by Hilton is right around the corner. Be prepared to pay premium for the DoubleTree.