We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Like bugs trailing across your room?” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Costa Smeralda

No photo provided
Got a photo?
Add it.
We can't find prices for this hotel
Our online travel partners don't provide prices for this hotel, but we can search other options in Gulf of Papagayo
Check In mm/dd/yyyy Check Out mm/dd/yyyy
Costa Smeralda
You added Costa Smeralda to your Saves list
Calle 18 Bis | Papagayo Gulf, 5000, Costa Rica   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #13 of 15 Hotels in Gulf of Papagayo
A TripAdvisor Member
“Like bugs trailing across your room?”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2005

This resort was a disappointment. It wasn't well-run and there wasn't much to do. We stayed at the Costa Smerald in December 2004. It turned out that most of the staff had decided to take their vacations that week, so only one of the four restaurants was open, there were no night-time activities and cleaning was hit and miss. The place is not four stars--maybe 2.5 at best. The food was ok but largely consisted of stale buns, unidentifiable crustaceans at dinner and sweets. And the snack bar in the middle of the property only served nachos with that horrific fake cheese. That's it!
Our room had a nice view--it was one of the villa-type rooms set in the hill--but a trail of ants marched across it and down the walls at all times. And the bathroom was in disrepair, with a leaky tap and stained enamel.
The beach was visually interesting but it was a public beach-not one exclusive to the hotel. Local Costa Ricans shared it with us, bringing their pets and family members. The sand is brown--not white like some of the brochures may advertise. If you don't mind a busy beach filled with locals, then this works for you. However, if you're looking pristine sand and privacy, forget it.
To the arachnophobes--don't go! We discovered that the multiple holes in the sand right next to our room actually belonged to tarantulas. I never saw one but it was never far from my thoughts....
If you're going to pay a lot...go somewhere else.

  • Stayed December 2004
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
Write a Review

3 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
See reviews for
Rating summary
  • Rooms
    2 of 5 stars
  • Service
    2 of 5 stars
  • Value
    1.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    2 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Thorold, Ont. Canada
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 3, 2004

My husband and I went to Costa Rica in Dec. 2003. We stayed at the Grande Papagayo Resort. At that time it was Costa Smeralda. Since the ownership change I can't say anything about improvements as I don't know what if anything has changed. The rooms were very nice, the hotel property was beautiful and the staff very friendly. The only complaint I would have is the food. It was good but just wasn't anything special. There wasn't much in the way of any organized activity such as beach volleyball or anything like that. But we enjoyed our stay enough that we are returning in Feb. We are going to the central Pacific area this time as Costa Rica has so much diversity that I need to see more. If you don't like high humidity then you should go to the Guanacaste province as it is the driest in the country.

Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hotels you might also like...
mm/dd/yyyy mm/dd/yyyy
Price Your Stay

Been to Costa Smeralda? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Costa Smeralda

Address: Calle 18 Bis | Papagayo Gulf, 5000, Costa Rica
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Guanacaste > Gulf of Papagayo
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Top resorts Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
#12 On the Beach Hotel in Gulf of Papagayo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 160
Also Known As:
Costa Smeralda Hotel Province Of Guanacaste

Owners: What's your side of the story?

If you own or manage Costa Smeralda, register now for free tools to enhance your listing, attract new reviews, and respond to reviewers.