Family of four, stayed 5 days at the end of April 13. Made the mistake of coming here after staying at a small eco-lodge in the Osa peninsula - so our experience of this resort was probably negatively effected by the comparison. Osa is a remote, pristine, lush tropical rainforest, while the Papagayo peninsula (a guide told us that the name had been changed from Snake Bay, for obvious reasons), is in Costa Rica's "dry forest" region (essentially dry scrub land, regularly burned by local farmers to clear for cattle grazing). We hoped to enjoy a relaxing beach break after the rainforest lodge, with some diving and snorkelling, but unfortunately this time of year wasn't ideal. There is good marine life nearby, but the visibility was poor and much of the sea and beach nearby was blighted by red tide when we were there. In addition, this hotel isn't set up for diving - you have to arrange everything through the concierge, who then communicates with the dive company. This led to considerable confusion and aggravation - after many phone calls our issue was sorted out when a manager intervened. The hotel itself is a vast luxury development, with beautifully manicured lawns (watered all day long), golf courses, several pools and several good restaurants and bars. It is essentially a box hotel, however, catering mainly to large corporate groups, and the kind of service you get is consistent with that kind of product. We experienced a very strange money-grubbing thing going on at this hotel - with such an expensive, high end product, it's surprising that they charge for things like wifi and the use of tennis rackets. We had the peculiar experience of arriving and being offered the chance to "upgrade" to a bigger better room, for over $1,000 more. When we said thanks, no thanks, we were told that "management has decided to give you the upgrade as we're sure you'll enjoy it so much you'll book it next time." Of course, when we got to the room, there were various welcome notes addressed to us, that made it clear they'd already decided to allocate the room to us (presumably because of over-booking), and were just having a go to extract an extra grand from us. Fair enough, I guess, but certainly left us keeping an eye on our wallets rather than feeling grateful. Even little things like breakfast turned into a nickel-and-diming exercise. If you don't go for the big buffet, and order something a la carte, they then charge you for every cup of coffee or juice they pour you. Nothing really major, but the inconsistency and constant little extra charges did become irritating. The facilities were of a very high standard - large, beautiful and comfortable rooms - and service was generally very good, as you'd expect from Four Seasons. If you get out of the pool-side area, you can see lots of interesting animals and birds (various kinds of monkeys swinging in the trees nearby), and the hotel arranges some great trips to national parks and other attractions in the region.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dear Ned, your kind comments about our service and the rooms are very much appreciated. I am sorry that your experience in booking a diving experience was not more seamless and easy, and that you found the cost structure of various services not appropriate. We try our best to create a luxurious yet high value experience for guests and consistently offer special room offers and a number of complimentary activities and classes on site like cooking, nature hikes and our kids club, free for guests. But I can understand your comments and truly appreciate your feedback and will share with my team as it is invaluable for us in improving our product. Thank you again for taking the time to share your experience with us. Pura Vida, Pascal F., General Manager
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.