Like many of you, my travel buddy and I bought the Living Social deal for this hotel and stayed there for 3 nights during our visit to the Pacific Coast beaches of CR. Our stay was pleasant overall and enjoyable.
For those thinking about booking this property, here are my pros and cons for staying here:
Peace and quiet - a far cry from the hustle of Playa del Coco's main strip of hotels, restaurants and bars.
Wildlife - though I was disappointed with not being able to see howling monkeys on the premises, seeing and photographing the iguana, crown feathered birds and even the red crabs on the beach (before they disappeared into the hole) was very enjoyable.
Close proximity to the beach down a mostly paved path - perfect for an early morning run or walk (which I did)... As well as watching the sunsets. There are also nature trails with overlook platforms and lounge chairs for enjoying the view.
Room was large and mostly clean (with queen bed and sofa bed). Staff members were friendly and helpful (especially Gabby, who navigated with us on the phone get to the hotel and helped make the sofa bed).
- The condos are indeed a bit dated and the shower/tub cube combo in the bathroom is a bit of a hassle to get in and out of...
- There is no place to park your car by the condo, so you have to walk up and down the path to get to breakfast and the main reception.
- The food on site was not so great, but we had to eat there to use up our $100 food credit. They were always out of certain dishes and ingredients to prepare said dishes, which then limited our already limited menu choices. Food presentation is nice even though the food is flavorless. If you must eat there, get the Ceviche Mixto.
- Make sure you remind them about happy hour. I'm sure the 6pm darkness throws people off but having a clock on premises would be helpful. For drinks, get the pura vida (coffee liqueur, milk, chocolate syrup and cinnamon) or caprihinia.
- Unless you can handle many shots of tequila at once, do not get the margarita. There must have been at least 3 shots of tequila in there with very little lime flavor. I had this drink with dinner and ended up getting really sick, and I typically drink 2-3 times/week. Social drinkers beware!
All in all, it was a decent place to crash while visiting Costa Rica's beaches. With some improvements, this place could be a budget "resort" alternative to the Hilton Papagayo Resort down the street.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- A development surrounded by flora, fauna and wildlife that offers a natural environment in complete harmony with the surroundings. Vista Bahia Beach Resort is the ideal place to rest, relax and enjoy everything Costa Rica has to offer. Animals seen and photographed on property have included; monkeys, squirrels, iguanas, numerous butterflies, mapaches, and pizotes and many different species of birds, We also have numerous trees, cacti, hiking trails and beautiful gardens. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Monarch Hotel Gulf Of Papagayo
- Monarch Resort Gulf Of Papagayo
- Vista Bahia Beach Resort Costa Rica/Playa Panama, Guanacaste