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“Best hotel in Costa Rica” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Florblanca Resort

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Florblanca Resort
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   4 KM North of Franks Place | Cobano, Santa Teresa 65771, Costa Rica   |  
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Ranked #12 of 26 Hotels in Santa Teresa
London, UK
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Best hotel in Costa Rica”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2005

Thankfully the staff have improved and the manager Greg was on hand all the time (even cooking the to die for breakfast muffins). To be honest we stayed in some of the best hotels in Costa Rica and none of them compared to the quality and service we received at Flor Blanca it was quite simply in another league.

It was expensive but in this case very much worth it. The Staff were friendly helpful and seamed proud to work at such a great hotel. Nothing would stop me recommending this hotel, it is a dream. The food is the best we had in Costa Rica and possibly some of the best food we have ever tasted and we have eaten in some pretty great places.

Only negative I can add is that some of the garden villas suffer from background noise from the road, but it is minimal.

Overall a beautiful resort, in a beautiful setting that is extremely well managed so do not hesitate to make a visit, 3 nights at least, we only stayed 2 and wished we had spent 7!.

  • Stayed October 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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239 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (55)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Stowe, Vermont
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 13, 2005

Flor Blanca was intended to be the "highlight" of our honeymoon in June, however we were disappointed in staff service for the high price tag to stay there.

The positives... We stayed in Villa #1 which is the closest to the ocean and has views through the palm trees. (Also the most expensive) The Villas are beautiful, open aired, huge Bali bed and rain showers. The waterfall pool is lovely and the location right on the beach is great for early morning runs, surfing and meandering on the beach at sunset.

The negatives... We found the staff to be unprofessional and unhelpful. There was a distinct "attitude" the staff has that made us feel uncomfortable. The staff seemed to be there to surf and play and were not concerned with guests. Villa #1 is great, but every day the staff from the resort walk right in front of villa when they go to surf. There is also a path in front of Villa #1 that staff from Milarepa next door use. The restaurant has great food, but is also a very popular local hangout so be sure to reserve a good table. (a service they offer for guests).

Overall it is a beautiful resort, in a beautiful setting that is terribly mismanaged and for the price you should receive better service as a paying guest.

We also stayed at Casa Chameleon just up the road and had a wonderful experience. Beautiful setting and villa, superior service and reasonably priced. Casa Chameleon was the highlight of our honeymoon and when we return we will stay there and not at Flor Blanca.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 7, 2005

We have just returned from our second vacation in Costa Rica. We love Costa Rica and it's people, but what you will find at the Flor Blanca is an assortment of 20 something North American kids running a hotel with no obvious prior training in hotel service. It seems that the criteria for hiring is, attracitve, tatooed, do you surf and speak English... hired!

The grounds are beautiful and we rented a two bedroom villa for our family of 4, Plenty of room. Beautiful and comfortable beds, a luxury in Costa Rica. Getting around this area is slow, and I HIGHLY recommend renting a car, or you will be very bored, unless you plan on just some serious relaxing. Please note, we were informed that the original owners had recently sold the hotel, it seems that in this change over, details are getting forgotten, the glowing reports that you read in travel books and magazine articles are not quite acurate as I write this review.

Here are some of the problems with the hotel. First off, it is absolutely the most expensive property in the area. We do stay at Four Seasons and Ritz Carltons, and are willing to pay top dollar, when appropriate. For over $400 a night at a hotel that is American owned and run by Americans, I expect services such as turn down in the evening, complementary bottled water, better quality soaps ( I have no idea what the soap in banana leaves was, we recieved tiny bars of soap in paper wrappers). There is a lovely sunken outdoor bathtub, and no bubblebath.... This is not a service oriented hotel, it is VERY laid back and as expensive as some of the top world wide chains.

We ordered a single piece of pie one evening, and we were charged a $20 service charge for bringing it to the room! The pie was a $6.00 item. We complained, and the service charge was removed.

Several words or caution.... In case you are unaware, there is a severe outbreak of Dengue fever in Costa Rica. We meet 2 people in our 13 days there that had had it. It is spread by mosquitos. I suggest if you are visiting Costa Rica or staying at Flor Blanca, that you bring along, or plan to purchase plenty of mosquito repellant. We were slathered at ALL times and were still bitten. Flor Blanca, has open air rooms, except for the bedrooms as you may have read in some of the other reviews. We also used mosquito coils, which I brought with us. They proved to be somewhat effective.

There are 2 cats on the property that will freely enter your "open aired villas", so it you have allergies, of just don't want a cat in your villa, there is not much you can do... and the staff there doesen't care nor can they control the cats.

We hired a "surf instructor" for our 9 year old son, who does surf already, but the surf in CR is much stronger and difficult then the tiny waves in Santa Monica CA. The lesson was the instructor leaving our son out in the line-up with 7-8 foot waves while he rode waves in himself. The "boards" that they offer for use at Flor Blanca are terrible.... better off renting in town, ( Santa Teresa) which we had done but were told that we could use the junk boards at the hotel. If you want to rent boards go the Alex's in Santa Teresa. He's a great guy.

I totally agree that if you are staying at Flor Blanca for awhile, the food becomes VERY boring! We were there for 4 days. I suggest trying dinner at Tropico Latino in Santa Teresa.. we had actually been staying there and moved... not sure if that was truely the best choice. The beach in front of Tropico Latino is swimable ( Flor Blanca isn't) and the staff there is a bit more authentic. Also note, the yoga and pilates classes are an additional fee.

So the bottom line is... it's a beautiful property and the villas are very comfortable. You will pay dearly for service that is average. As far as a high end hotel in the area.. this is the only game in town. If you don't expect too much, you won't be disappointed.

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Orange County, CA
Level Contributor
16 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 54 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2005

The bad thing about Hotel Florblanca is that we had to leave. This place is unbelievable and surpassed our expectations. The villas are stunning, very large and beautifully designed. We stayed in Villa #4 and at first were disappointed because we did not have an ocean view but we could hear the waves and the jungle view was even better. There's a cat who will live with you if you let her. We named her Flora and she loves scrambled eggs and whatever leftovers you may have.

Only the bedroom was air conditioned. The living room was open air and we spent much of our time listening to the jungle sounds and watching the animals.

The grounds are amazing. There are landscapers out every day cleaning and tending to the varied foliage.

The staff was very helpful and friendly. Florblanca is staffed by mostly early 20 something surfers from all over the world. It was fun to get to know them and they go out of their way to help with any request.

The food in the restaurant was superb. The presentation and flavors were terrific. I have only 1 small complaint. They need to rotate the entrees a little more. We stayed for 5 nights and saw very few dinner entrée changes, no changes at all on the lunch menu. We were also forewarned about the lack of spice in Costa Rican food so we brought our own bottle of Tabasco sauce. Oh, and bring your own salt and pepper too as it's only bought out upon request.

Unlike some other posts, I did not think the prices were bad. We paid about $80-$90 for dinner each night but we always had 2 sushi appetizers, 2 entrees and several drinks. I think the sushi rolls were about $7.50, drinks around $6 and entrees around $18 for fish, more for beef. A one hour massage cost $70. I think these prices fall well below what I would pay in Southern California. Another nice thing is that Florblanca takes care of all tour expenses so you only have one bill at the end of the trip instead of paying for this and that along the way.

If you're looking to save money you can take a taxi into Santa Teresa. There are a few markets and a liquor store at the crossroad of Santa Teresa and Mal Pais. Bring your own wine if you're into wine because the selection is atrocious. Santa Teresa also has some really good mom/pop places to eat where you can get a full Costa Rican meal and beer for $5.

The road through Santa Teresa is dirt so it gets very muddy if it rains. The best way into Santa Teresa is to rent a quad but be prepared to get muddy. It's all good…. You're in Costa Rica, not L.A. so relax and go with the flow……

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2005

Just got back from a 5-night stay at Flor Blanca. There is no comparison between Casa Chameleon and Flor Blanca. My wife and I wanted to stay longer at Flor Blanca but a pre-booked wedding party had taken all 11 villas for a whole week. I then rented a quad and visited Casa chameleon to see what the rave was about and was disappointed. The only thing they have is a view of Sunset Reef from the hill. They only have 2 bungalows (which are clean and well finished), no restaurant/bar (although small tiki bar by the pool), no quad rentals; pool is very small, very steep climb to the Casas from the main road and no beach. Walks on the beach are very important for my wife and I, so waking up to the monkeys 50 ft from the sand is a dream come true. I met the owner of Casa Chameleon and although at the time she could not accommodate us she still showed me around and I liked that, they definitely have taken pride in building these 2 bungalows/villas. Yet I sensed a feeling of intrusion if I were to stay there as there were no servers/wait staff, front desk, internet service, laundry service and if I needed something I knew I would have to knock on the owners front door to get it. I have never experienced anything like Flor Blanca before and have sworn to return. Don't lose your head on the dirt road from Cobano to the resort, it can get bumpy and muddy but well worth it once you arrive. If you are concerned with the price of the villas, don’t be, Ask for Estoban and see if there is anything he can do with the price. We stayed 5 nights and the price came down from $320 to $250 a night. I had not booked on the Internet and got extremely lucky in getting our villa. Estoban did explain that next time we should book on the Internet and once we arrive (and we’re face to face), he will better the rates. And at $180 for Casa Chameleon, that extra $70 is more than worth it. The restaurant at Flor Blanca served Sushi everyday at 4pm and at 6pm the full menu opened for dinner, try the sea bass with lobster bisque. Every morning I was up at 5 with the monkeys checking out the surf. For the surfers out there, I walked south around the bend and paddled out through the channel by 'suck rock' and longboarded the right peaks coming through double over-head five mornings in a row. In the line-up were the owner of Flor Blanca (Greg) on his bodyboard, the bar tender (Chris) from the night before and the Pm host of the hotel, Frederico.

As a pool contractor in south Florida, I don't make a whole lot of money and I'm used to paying around a $100/$150 a night at hotels and resorts but I can tell you that I would have paid the $320 a night for those villas and that service. Our 10-year anniversary was a huge success and I believe as a married man, if your looking to please your other half, look no further than Flor Blanca.

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2005

My husband and I honeymooned at Florblanca for 5 nights. The resort is beautiful but there are a few things I wanted to share for anyone considering this hotel. The villas are great, tucked away in the gardens. They are open air living rooms and bathrooms, while the bedroom is air conditioned. I didn't realize the living room was also open but also didn't mind the small lizards that spent the nights in there catching bugs. There is a sign in the bathroom that says you can not flush any toilet paper and we had to use the waste basket instead. You can't swim at the beach at Florblanca because of the rocks, you have to walk a few minutes south, but the surf was very strong at that beach too. We walked north of the hotel about 30 minutes to Playa Hermosa which was a gorgeous beach. The town of Santa Teresa is a surf town and this resort is the nicest and most expensive place in town. The restaurant was very expensive and we walked to Milarepa next door every night for fresh fish and creative cuisine. We rented an ATV for the day and that was the best way to get around since the roads were all dirt and bumpy. Since we didn't have a car the ATV gave us the freedom to explore and we drove it all the way to Montezuma. Its a great place to go, especially if you like to surf, It's very secluded and there's not much activity at night at all.

Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
64 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 86 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2005

Flor Blanca was the highlight of our visit to the Pacific Coastline. Although it was dreary and rainy, the cozy 1-bedroom villa was perfect for one evening. There is a large sitting room, open to the view of the ocean. This has a kitchenette area with sink and refridgerator. It's larger than most hotel rooms alone and you could really have a party in here. To be honest, the villas are larger than a Boston 1-bedroom. A hallway connected the air-conditioned bedroom with large soft bed, cd player, and fan - to the outdoor bathroom, fully private but allowing for a great view of the jungle skies. Each room comes with a bookshelf and we enjoyed perusing some of the books other visitors had left behind.

Each villa comes with two soft cotton robes and two sarongs, perfect for the beach or pool. Music for the CD player was also provided – our room had a classical piano cd and a Chris Issak CD. We had also brought our own “romantic music” CD as it was our honeymoon, and since I forgot it at the hotel, maybe someone else can enjoy it while in Villa #7.

The environmentalism emphasized here made me feel very good about my choice of hotel. Instead of plastic bottles, the soaps come wrapped in natural banana leafs. The hotel offers sarongs in place of towels, because they are easier to wash and dry. The rooms come with air-conditioning, but also a fan so that those who wish to use less electricity may do so.

The food at Nectar restaurant is famous in Malpais and people come from hotels to eat there. We missed the afternoon “Sushi Time”, but did greatly enjoy the sushi at dinner. Fresh fish prepared in a French-Asian style is the order of the day. For lunch, I had the best cheeseburger of my life while my partner dined on a Singaporean noodle dish.
Breakfasts are typical Costa Rican, with a changing special of the day, served with whole-grain muffins and a tropical fruit plate.

The bathtub is shaped like a leaf and is very deep, fitting two people. The shower is well-fit-out, and includes two soaps wrapped in a banana leaf. These are custom-made for the hotel from the Plumeria (or Flor Blanca) flower. One is for shampoo and the other for soap, and we loved them so much that we wished they sold them in their gift shop.

The hotel has a Balinese theme, and wooden Balinese statues, Asian décor, and thatched roofs complete the feeling. The yoga/martial arts studio looked fantastic. The gift shop was filled with Eastern goodies as well as Costa Rican artisan crafts, for prices that are accessible to most Americans. They also sell the beautiful sarongs here.

Quite a few famous people stay here. One of the Grateful Dead guys was staying here when we were here. As it is a small hotel with lots of privacy, it's ideal for that anonymous get-away.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Florblanca Resort

Address: 4 KM North of Franks Place | Cobano, Santa Teresa 65771, Costa Rica
Phone Number:
Location: Costa Rica > Province of Puntarenas > Santa Teresa
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Romantic Hotel in Santa Teresa
#9 Family Hotel in Santa Teresa
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Santa Teresa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Florblanca Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our accommodations offer complete privacy and luxury surrounded by beautiful gardens and views of the Pacific Ocean. All villas are only steps away from the surf, open -air dining, our new Spa Bambu, fitness center, a yoga and Pilates studio, and other amenities. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Florblanca Hotel Santa Teresa
Florblanca Resort Santa Teresa
Florblanca Resort Costa Rica/Santa Teresa

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