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“Just a beautiful way to reconnect with my love of 20 years” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Manu Villas and Spa

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Manu Villas and Spa
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Hatillo Rd, Dominical 25687, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Acworth, Georgia
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Just a beautiful way to reconnect with my love of 20 years”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 15, 2014

Alex and Grace were fantastic hosts. We just returned a week ago and couldn't have been more pleased with our experience.

While the homes are in Costa Rica, it truly feels like your in a Bali resort with jungles all around the look and feel of teak. I had an initial concern about being too close to other villas, but was ultimately impressed with the solitude and privacy. Our first visitor was a gentle and wandering 4' boa that was wandering across the path to the next villa. Pepe our surf instructor gracefully removed him into the brush. At Manu, as with all the other villas high up above Dominical, you are definitely part of the ecosystem around you.

Everything was pretty close from the house. It takes about 8-12 minutes off the main highway (34) to get up to the house. Once you're on the main highway it's 20 minutes to the Quepos airport, 40 minutes to Manuel Antonio Park, 5 minutes from the beach at Dominical and your within 20 minutes either north or south from a dozen great beaches. You're 5 minutes from really fun zip-lining and 20 minutes from the Nauyuca Falls trailhead. That was one of the funnest things we did.

You can always just hang out at Manu's awesome pool though. The view is wonderful. We'd definitely go back again.

Thanks for dinner and a great experience Grace and Alex. Hopefully we'll see you again soon.

-Marshall

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 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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73 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (6)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Lexington, Kentucky
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2013

My husband and I spent 5 nights here on our honeymoon in July. It was the most perfect place to get away from civilization, yet still enjoy some adventure. The area was gorgeous and the accommodations were perfect. Grace is a fantastic cook and great host. They are nearby enough to help, yet give you privacy as well. I highly recommend both the horseback riding to the waterfall, and kayaking the mangroves. Both were memories that will last a lifetime. I would suggest eating on the property for most meals as there are limited restaurants that seem safe to eat at nearby. The beaches nearby are very surfing oriented and not suited for sandcastles or suntanning. For this reason, I would suggest doing more adventure tours and nature based activities. The villas are also just a great place to relax. We had such a fantastic experience and hope to come back sometime!

Room Tip: We loved the Potoo Tree House. Don't be afraid to give it a try!
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Tulsa, OK
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2013

We could not have picked a better place for our honeymoon! It's a little piece of Bali perched high in the jungle of Costa Rica - overlooking the beautiful Pacific! 5 stars all around. Alex and Grace are incredible hosts. The property itself is gorgeous and truly unique. Beautiful grounds, amazing views of the jungle and ocean, and both the Treehouse and main house are incredible architecturally. The Treehouse is my wife's favorite vacation rental of all time, and we always stay in VRBO properties when we travel. When we drove up the hill and saw the Treehouse the first time she was literally in tears! Dominical and the surrounding area is very special, Alex & Grace are amazing hosts, the property is one of a kind - I cannot recommend staying here more!

Room Tip: The Treehouse is unbelievable, and the main house is also great (also Bali style).
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nashville, Tennessee
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2013

You know it's a great trip when your 13 and 10 year old ask if they can come back every year. From the minute we pulled onto the property, it was an outstanding experience. Grace and Alex have created a beautiful hideaway perched above a sweeping valley that converges with the Pacific. Each part of the day brought magical wildlife to our door. This, coupled with the fine architecture and details of the Pavilion, made for one of our best family trips.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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South Porcupine, Canada
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2012

We can't say enough about our recent stay at Manu Villas Pavilion! The private mountain villa surrounded by the lush rainforest with spectacular views of the Pacific is absolutely beautiful. The villa was immaculate with well kept grounds. The infinite pool, that appears perfectly perched on the mountain side, is the perfect spot to relax with a glass of wine as the sun sets for the evening or as the evening rains close in. We had our stay at Manu during the rainy season which I would ensure again for any future vacations to Costa Rica...just amazing! We enjoyed hot and and sunny days that often cooled nicely in the evening with a rain that would begin at, or just before, sunset. Manu is a perfect location for great day trips to the surrounding villages and beaches. We took advantage of the local markets and fisherman to have fresh fruit, vegetables and fish to cook for our dinner each day. The fresh selections of exotic flavours were fabulous for anyone who likes to cook, and the villa was equipped with everything you need in the kitchen. We did enjoy Grace's cooking for both a dinner and a breakfast, both of which were healthy, flavourful and well prepared meals. Alex & Grace are incredible hosts. They so kindly arranged for our transfer from Quepos to the Villa, had our car rental delivered to the villa the following day, arranged for a fabulous day on the water with Grace's brother in his fishing boat to go whale watching, arranged our exceptional private tour through Manuel Antonio Park, linked us to the local fishing beach in Domincalito to buy our fresh fish as well as guided us to the regional farmers market in San Isidro....Not to mention retrieved our camera that was forgotten in our rental vehicle and arranged to have it safely and securely shipped back to us in Canada...truly above and beyond exceptional hosts!! The housekeeping staff including Jussely, Yerlin and David were very pleasant and available if we needed them, but also ensured our privacy. The drive up the mountain road is steep and best navigated with a four wheel drive vehicle, but at no times felt unmanageable or unsafe. The gorgeous views, wildlife, exotic trees and flowers occupy your senses during the drive up or down the mountain. Manu Villas is truly an exceptionally relaxing and beautiful get away. We most definitely will return to Manu Villas when we plan our next trip to Costa Rica and would highly recommend it to anyone who asks.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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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Kansas City, Missouri
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 7, 2012 via mobile

My experience at Manu will be highly memorable, from the location (a breezy jungle-top spot overlooking the rushing waves of the Pacific.. privacy.. friendly and attentive caretakers nearby) to the grounds and house.

The patio is perfect for sunbathing, with a fresh, cool infinity pool surrounded by the exotic flora and fauna of this region. I enjoyed the frogs, birds, lizards, and occasional visits from domesticated dogs and a kitten who live in the area. The trees and flowers are aromatic and a sight for sore eyes..

The house is lovely and accomodating. I liked the open-air feel, and the kitchen was great for making breakfast and storing groceries. We used the grill in the tiki hut a couple of times, and also ate at a couple of the restaurants on the beach, which was never a let-down.

Grace arranged for a horseback riding tour of the Nauyaca waterfalls and her son gave us surfing lessons! The people in town are very friendly. I loved the feeling of remoteness. It does take a bit of a bumpy drive up a rocky dirt road to get there (took dramamine regularly for my carsickness!), but its worth being in such a location.
To truly get away from a Western way of life, to get closer to nature, and to get closer with your friends or loved one, this is a perfect place to stay. After telling stories about my trip, anyone who is already planning to go to Costa Rica is interested in the contact info

for this place. And rightly so!

  • Stayed July 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Chicago, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2012 via mobile

I can't imagine a more peaceful, relaxing place than the pavilion at Manu. Oh how i miss having wine by the pool and watching Toucans in the trees above me. I'll try to post pictures of the view-amazing.

We took advantage of having Grace cook meals most nights and her cooking did not disappoint. Her fish dishes were fine dining caliber-Healthy, fresh and tasty. My personal favorite was the tuna. We were also lucky enough to be there when Alex's parents were there-and sample their homemade Austrian apple pie-like dessert. Yum.

We brought our 6 month old baby and Manu went above and beyond....besides just providing a high chair and crib, they also made homemade sweet potato baby food and held the baby while I finished eating breakfast most mornings.

Full disclosure-the road up to Manu is fairly steep..but our rental Suv (arranged by Manu to be delivered to our villa) had no problems. Driving up the road was actually one of my husband's favorite parts of the trip-not something we do every day in flat Chicago.

I've stayed in a lot of places with outdoor showers and am usually disappointed by the experience- cold water, bugs, bees,etc....but not at the pavillion. It was perfect!!!

Alex, Grace and their daughter were there if we needed them, but not overbearing. All in all-I felt like a celebrity in my vacation home in the mountains...not like staying in a rental at all.

  • Stayed January 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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.
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Additional Information about Manu Villas and Spa

Address: Hatillo Rd, Dominical 25687, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Dominical
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #7 of 19 Specialty Lodging in Dominical
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Manu Villa Rental and Spa in Dominical Costa Rica caters to individuals who value an authentic encounter with nature. Hidden among 30 acres of lush tropical rain forest, four luxury vacation villas are situated on a small mountain ridge with expansive Pacific Ocean views stretching from Manuel Antonio Park in the north to the southern tip of the Osa Peninsula. Each rental villa comes with a private pool, fully equipped kitchen, organic linens, ocean views, tropical breezes, and the rain forest at your doorstep. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Manu Villas And Spa Costa Rica/Dominical

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