I'm not going to harp on everything you can read from other reviews- food okay at best but frequently bad, rooms in need of some TLC (shower broke 2x), only okay looking grounds, etc. I would like to say that on the positive side the staff, although severely under trained were incredibly nice. I got the sense they wanted to help and provide good service, maybe just lacked training which I consider Hilton's fault. Also positive is the beach, it is not "dirty" like others suggest, the sand is just a dark color from the volcanic rocks... it is actually pretty peaceful and the water very clear & enjoyable.
The first issue though is that I am so glad we used hotel points and didn't spend our own money to stay here. The cost of such lackluster experience would have made me pretty depressed. That being said, we were able to use points b/c of Diamond status.... which you don't really get the perks of at this hotel. We've stayed as Diamond members worldwide and have always had fabulous service with additional perks like executive lounges, prime rooms, etc. however that was not evident at this hotel. Yes, we did get the free internet in the room and yes, this is all inclusive but I still think there should be some other perk for being a Diamond member.... maybe a VIP bar/lounge area, top shelf liquor, etc. Just.... something. In fact, several of the restaurants have additional wine selections for purchase, I think that should be free if you have Diamond status since everything else is included, but it is not. Instead of top notch treatment, we were put into a double room b/c we wanted an ocean view and although the resort was definitely not full, were never able to move to a king room b/c of "availability" issues... not sure I believed that one. Also, my biggest issue was that while we left one day on an excursion we forgot to make dinner reservations and tried to make them when we got back. After being told by front desk and also by calling ourselves that all restaurants were full we had to play the "Diamond Card" on the phone and were finally given the last seating at El Dorado.... and walked into a half empty restaurant. I realize this might sound trivial or incredibly spoiled, but given that we spend literally months out of the year staying in Hilton's for work, I think you should be able to be accommodated in the restaurants without having to go through all that hassle only to find it barely occupied (also note that the reservation was for 9:15 for a restaurant that is supposedly open until 10pm).
My second issue would be with the spa. We booked a couples massage for our last evening there and while the massage itself was very good, there is nowhere to enjoy a couples experience. You're taken into the male/female locker rooms, which unlike most European spas clearly state you need to have your bathing suit and towel on for the sauna and hot tub to use on your own. Umm.... if I booked a couples massage, this is something I want to do with my boyfriend, but you can't. The spa was also empty and we were the last appointment of the day so I asked if it really mattered if I used the men's locker room or my boyfriend the ladies (again, you have to be clothed) but no go. The layout isn't the staff's fault, but if you're looking for a couples massage don't expect to get the full experience together. Also, DO NOT book the outdoor cabana. The Spa is right above the adult pool and next to a restaurant. We were lucky enough that most folks had left the pool for the day already and dinner service hadn't yet started.... but that didn't mean we couldn't hear every part of the dinner prep- dishes clanking, blenders running, staff instructions/conversations, etc. Again, not the staff's fault but a design flaw in the spa and not at all a relaxing atmosphere and probably even worse when people are actually at the pool so just be aware before you book any treatments.
Overall, the resort was just ok.... a good value I'm sure, just not at all what you'd expect from a Hilton.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Nestled in a bay surrounded by the Pacific Ocean at the Gulf of Papagayo in Guanacaste, our resort is the perfect place to let your worries drift away. The magnificent view of the tranquil waters, the surrounding lush tropical gardens and abundant wildlife will make you experience the true Costa Rican feel.This magical all-inclusive resort also offers:- Convenient location, only 20 minutes from the Liberia International Airport- Large property but with an intimate atmosphere and feel- New all inclusive concept with boutique-style service without the need of bracelets or towel cards and no limit in à la carte dining. - Private beach feel with calm tides year round- Casita-style bungalows perched hillside overlooking the bay. - World-class Spa offering full range of traditional and exotic treatments in a Costa Rican – inspired natural ambiance- Unforgettable setting for Honeymoons and Weddings - Venues which add a local flair to your meetings, incentives and other social gatherings.- Just minutes away from major local attractions, National Parks and beaches ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hilton Papagayo Costa Rica Hotel Gulf Of Papagayo
- Hilton Papagayo Costa Rica Resort And Spa
- Fiesta Premier Costa Rica
- Hilton Gulf Of Papagayo
- Gulf Of Papagayo Hilton
- Fiesta Resort Costa Rica
- Fiesta Premier Resort Spa Costa Rica